Marriage is great, wonderful, and adventurous all at the same time…until it isn’t. When a couple is married and both work, things can become contentious very quickly. Things around the home can begin to get neglected and unless there is good communication about who will accomplish which task, you might start to feel like your marriage is headed toward emotional bankruptcy.
In order to create balance and fairness, treat this aspect of your marriage like a business. You need to come equipped with lists and projections and charts and graphs.
Sit down, come up with a plan, and stick to it. Here are five suggestions to explore:
Start with things you hate doing. Communicate about the chores and tasks you hate doing so you can tackle those first. Who knows, your spouse might like doing something you just do not want to do. And if you both loathe something equally, you can always get creative and find money to pay for that service
Make lists that consist of “Yours”, “Mine”, and “Ours” My personal favorite “I can’t wait until the kids get old enough to do this so I never have to do it again!”
Diversify the responsibilities and switch them up every so often so someone does not feel stuck doing something over and over.
Communicate as much as possible about meetings, errands, and special occasions. It is very frustrating to sit down and get ready to watch the game and your wife asks why aren’t you ready for the work dinner for tonight that you had no idea about. Write down who does what and post it. In my family, we have our digital calendars synced so everyone gets lists and calendar notifications at the same time.
Recap when things get done correctly or do not get done correctly. Praise accomplishments and brainstorm why things did not get done or work out this week or this month, and deal with problems and conflicts as they come up. Be prepared to fail. A lot. Like a whole lot. it will get better though.
Politely remind or encourage to not forget how important it is “insert responsibility here” must be done. If your spouse just flatly refuses to do something, you have some decisions to make. You might have to hire help (for most men when they hear money is being spent on this usually brings them around), or just stop doing some tasks that aren’t as important right now. The world will not stop spinning if the house isn’t spotless every day.
Next, I would like to discuss football and how the spread formation is revolutionizing the game…okay, fellas, she stopped reading for a bit, but she will be back so we should make this quick. here is a secret tip. The degree to which housework is shared is now one of the two most important predictors of a woman’s marital satisfaction, according to Stephanie Coontz in the New York Times.
If you ask wives to the top source of their stress she will probably say it is because their husband does not want to do his fair share of household duties. If you share responsibilities studies show that women feel more sexually attracted to partners who help. But just don’t do it to get sex. she is the love of your life. She is your queen. Take some stress off her shoulders if you can, whenever you can. It may take a couple of times for her to realize you are helping, so don’t give up, just get in the groove. Okay, I think she is coming back to the article so I will leave it at that. Just trust me.
Tinker with your lists and charts, or whatever you use. Work smart, not hard, and enjoy your marriage. There are so many ways to be successful at shared responsibilities. Keep at it, don’t give up and do not let it destroy your marriage.
Prescott Williamson is a Bible-believing Christian. He is a husband, a father, and someone who believes that there is a little humor to be found in whatever situation God sends your way. He was born in the small islands of the Bahamas but now lives in the Suburbs of Fort Worth Texas, which is basically the same thing. He enjoys TV, reading, blogging and serving in his church (especially on the days they serve donuts). You can see what I have been thinking about lately on my blog www.prescottascoolbreeze.com.