In days gone by, there was an almost standard way of doing things. Or so I understand, anyway. The man would be the “provider” who would leave the home to work hard to make all the money to support his family. The woman would take the lead at home with the kids and housework. He would not do much housework, but would do “man’s” work fixing things and lawn care. She would be not be responsible for making money, thought she might do shopping for the family.
I didn’t grow up like that. Both my parents worked. Well, actually my Dad always worked, and my mom had a more flexible work schedule when I was young. She didn’t work at all for a few years when I was younger, from what I was told. However, once I got older, she went back into the workforce and worked full-time.
The thing is, my Dad was always very fair. He stepped up and did work around the house. He cleaned, and sometimes he cooked for us. Not as well as my Mom 🙂 But, he developed into a decent cook and now – as a senior citizen – he takes the lead. What I’m getting at is that work was shared in a way that seems fair to me, and this has shaped my views on things as an adult.
This is in contrast to a couple I know today. They’re in my generation, so theoretically they should have a more “modern” view than folks in my parents’ generation. Again, keep in mind that my parents kept a great balance in terms of workload. But with these friends I have, the woman seems to do more.
They both work full-time, and both do quite well. They’re really fortunate that way, and have given themselves a nice life and financial security through their efforts and good fortune. I think he makes a bit more than her, but they both are senior-level people where they work.
However, he admits that she does 95% of the work at home. Or, at least this is what he claims. Maybe he does more around the house that he wants to admit, and perhaps he’s trying to act cool. I do know that he is the kind of guy who is a probably a great Dad. However, it seems like she does more around the house based on what he says.
Does she complain? According to him, no. Apparently, she just gets things done. Maybe she just takes on this burden because she thinks that this should be her work to do, and maybe this is what she saw her own mother do at home years ago. Or, perhaps she just thinks she can get things done quicker and better than him, so she doesn’t even bother to get him to do things.
Let’s say he’s exaggerating a bit, and he really does 30% instead of the 5% he says. Still, that means she is doing quite a bit more. To me, it seems unfair to her. Frankly, I wonder if he really gets how easy his life is and how lucky he truly is.
Like I said though, it doesn’t seem to bother her at all according to him. Importantly, it does seem like they have a great marriage and are very happy.
I’m curious what you think of this.
Do you think this is typical in 2-income households, where the wife does more around the house despite both spouses working? Or, have you seen couples where it might even be the opposite and the guy does more?
Should work truly be 50% in cases like this?
Can you see how people could be so genuinely very happy in a situation like this, as seems to be the case?