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How to Divide Household Chores With Your Spouse Without Conflict

Shweta Ajwani Jan 10, 2019
If you feel that 'arguing over sharing responsibilities and chores' has become a chore in itself, then it is high time you come up with a foolproof plan, and save your marriage before it hits the rocks. Here are the different ways in which you can divvy chores around the house with your spouse.

Chore Wars!

According to The CLR Chore Wars Report, 1 out of 5 Americans said that they argued over household chores every month! 69% women stated that they did the larger share of housework, whereas 53% men argued that they worked around the house just as much as the women did!
Man is made for something better than disturbing dirt. -Oscar Wilde
Does your husband quote Oscar Wilde, and glorify the existence of man and his purpose of doing great things when all you asked of him was to dust the house furniture? Does your wife come up with the classic Housework is what a woman does that nobody notices unless she hasn't done it.
By Evan Esar every time she wants to make you realize how the house would be anything but clean if not for her? Is your idea of housework sweeping a room with a glance? Or do you agree with Mario Buatta when she says, "Dust is a protective coating for furniture?"
If your answer to all these questions has been a constant 'yes', then it is time you reevaluated your role in sharing responsibilities around the house. It is not just about shopping for grocery or doing the laundry, it is also about the small things like changing the toilet paper, taking out the garbage every night, and dusting the house furniture.
Admittedly, chores are boring, and doing them repeatedly can take a toll on the one doing them continuously. Your spouse is your better half, and it is your responsibility to not let her feel burdened all the time.
Even though you are the bread earner, see the magic of 'honey, let me do the dishes tonight' work wonders as her love for you increases tenfold!

Now, now ... don't be flummoxed. This information will help you work your way through it.

Communicate, Don't Bicker

◆ Instead of blaming your hubby for not doing the dishes, or not taking the kids to the park, sit down, talk, discuss roles and responsibilities, and come up with a plan.
◆ Make a list of all the chores that need to be done in and around the house, along with the errands that need to be run.

◆ Discuss your day's as well as week's schedule, and inform about your availability or non-availability on a particular day.
◆ Based on the time that you have decided to devote to housework, select tasks that you think you can and will accomplish.

◆ Stay true to your word, as your partner relies on you, and takes care of other jobs at hand.

Be Flexible

◆ Don't be too stringent with the ground rules.

◆ If, according to the list on the fridge, your wife was supposed to pick up the kids from school on Wednesday, but she can't since she needs to stay back in office for an emergency meeting, be happy to drive down from work, and pick up your bundles of joy.
◆ However, don't let this turn into a habit, either. Only in case of dire emergencies, do accept change of responsibility.

Ways to Divide Household Chores

◆ Since ages, men have been thought fit to mow the lawn, and woman to cook in the kitchen. Delegating chores on the basis of gender is one way to divide work, as long as there are no arguments later on.
◆ If the arrangement of the age-old 'wife cooks the meal and husband fixes broken pipes and lights around the house' goes down well with you, continue doing so peacefully.
◆ If your husband enjoys shopping for grocery, and vouches to do it every week, let it be his responsibility. Similarly, if you prefer sheets to be washed and folded in a particular fashion, take it up as your job. In simple words, do what you love, and it won't feel like work anymore.
◆ For work that is not desired by either of you, for example, cleaning toilets, work in a weekly manner. Your husband could do it this week, and you could do it the next.

◆ Consider your partner's body clock, and chalk up a work schedule. If your partner is comfortable doing the laundry in the night, then so be it. As long as the work is getting done.

Appreciate the Effort

◆ When your responsibilities are shared, you get a lot of time to relax, the monotony of everyday life is broken, and life becomes easier. For this, thank your partner who has been supportive.
◆ Instead of continuously nagging about a job half-done or not being done the way 'you' would like it, appreciate the effort that goes into it.

◆ Appreciation ushers an aura of positivity, saves your energy that you would otherwise spend on arguments, and motivates your partner to do a better job the next time, without repeating the mistake.
◆ It is laundry night, and it is your husband's turn. Don't fret and get anxious about it. Give him proper, detailed instructions on how to go about it, and leave him to it. Don't hover around and be a back-seat driver.
◆ Words of love needn't necessarily be just 'I love you'. Last night was pasta night, and your husband did a more-than-fair job of meeting your cooking standards. A simple 'I really enjoyed the meal last night' or 'I didn't know you could cook so beautifully' will not only set his spirits high, but also motivate him to volunteer to cook again tonight!
Don't let something as trivial as housework get in your way of leading a happy life. Don't let it crumble your family around you. If it is too much of a task, seek domestic help if you can. That will reduce the burden instantly.
Housework doesn't have to mean dusting the furniture or cleaning the garage, every day and every night. Work with your spouse as a team. Don't wait to be asked. Offer to work when you can. Make this year's spring cleaning session a fun activity, as you dust around with your favorite dance number playing in the background!