and this shouldn’t be something to ooooh and ahhhhh over.
I love my husband. I’m grateful for him every day. We are partners. This means that when he cooks dinner, I do the dishes. This means that if I fold laundry, he unloads the dishwasher. This means some nights he cooks me dinner, or like this week, he prepared soups for us to use as lunches for the week. This means that during December and April, my busiest times, he picks up my slack around the house, and he doesn’t even complain about it because I do the same for him.
Why is it that when I bring up my husband doing the above mentioned acts, many women act as if he’s hung the moon? When I say I cleaned the entire house, I don’t receive verbal applause. This baffles me.
We both work full-time jobs, so we both do housework. It makes sense to me. Obviously, it’s not that simple for many.
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, women’s work has shifted in the workforce (more than 50% of women are the primary breadwinners in their families) but not so much in the home:
“On an average day, 19 percent of men did housework–such as cleaning
or doing laundry–compared with 48 percent of women. Forty percent of
men did food preparation or cleanup, compared with 66 percent of women.”
While women make up more than half of the workforce today, women only occupy between 10-15% of CEO and upper level positions. No, I don’t think men cooking and cleaning will solve this issue, but I do think it’s difficult to be both CEO of a company and CEO of the home.
Cooking and cleaning aren’t part of a woman’s nature and duty. Cooking and cleaning are things we do to create a liveable, healthy home, and that should be a man’s (partner’s) concern as well. With more and more women as the breadwinners, they need more time to accomplish career-oriented goals: publish articles, attend conferences, write kick-ass proposals, etc. This means women don’t have more time than men to spend on housework, not to mention child-rearing.
If I ever have a son, I hope he grows up in a world that expects him to know how to grocery shop on a budget, do laundry, clean wood floors, get a wine stain out of a white shirt, and make homemade soup for his wife. I’m thankful to my mother-in-law for what she calls “husband training.” I think we need more of it.