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How do you divide up chores in your house?
January 9, 2013 at 10:50 AM

Help! Chores Are Ruining My Marriage

Posted by Aunt Becky 
on December 27, 2012 at 5:54 PM

You probably wouldn't guess it, but I'm a fairly fastidious person. I love bleach like I love cotton candy (read: a lot). With three kids, it's pretty hard to keep up with the chores, and it's even harder when your partner doesn't find chores to be something "worth doing." I won't lie: this difference of opinion led to many fights between us, although it did not cause our impending divorce.

Here's what I wish I'd done about chores when we were still together.

1) Be open, upfront, and honest about the way you want your living quarters to look. That's vital and a discussion that needs to happen before you're screaming over his inability to throw away his trash or her inability to put dirty clothes in the laundry.

2) Decide what will work for each of you. Marriage is all about compromise - neither person gets it "their way" which means that you're both going to have to change your expectations so that you're on the same page.

3) Decide which of the chores are really necessary to everyone's health and well-being. Just because you're a neat freak doesn't mean your partner has to flip out each time someone spills a drop of coffee on the counter.

4) Create a chore chart of chores that must be done on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis. This can include things as simple as "taking out the trash" or "loading the dishwasher."

5) Decide, based on ability and preference, who will take care of what chores and write them down. I suggest a Google Calendar, but there's a zillion apps out there for just that. I like Google Calendar's because you can share then and even have them set up auto-reminders to tell you what you're supposed to be doing.

6) Remember that not all chores are created equal and divide them accordingly. Starting the dishwasher is NOT as hard as washing all the floors, so make sure the chart is fair.

7) If your partner's chores go unfinished, remind him or her nicely (NO NAGGING!) that he or she needs to finish their chore. If it's impossible for some reason (migraine or something like that), offer to help. It's a partnership.

8) Understand that YOUR way isn't always the RIGHT way and if your partner does things differently? That's okay. You don't have to be in total control about everything.

9) Be sure to thank each other for completion of each chore. Not only is it nice to feel appreciated, it's a great way to make sure you continue using your chore chart.

10) Whatever you do, don't let resentments build up inside you and fester. Those negative feelings will only fester until they explode in a nasty fight. If your partner isn't pulling his or her weight around the house, talk to them about the agreed-upon chore chart.

How do you divide up chores in your house?


Image via EvelynGiggles/Flickr


  • virginiamama71
    January 9, 2013 at 4:02 PM

    When I was married the only chore my husband insisted on doing was his own laundry. He had a certain way to wash his clothes, and take care of them. It worked for us.

    Now my son is responsible for his room(making/stripping the bed, vacumming, straightening up) and I do his laundry but he has to fold and put them away. 

  • chillemi78
    January 10, 2013 at 3:42 AM
    I stay home and my husband works so it all pretty much falls on me. That being said, he does pitch in when I need it and makes sure I get my much needed breaks too, he just doesn't have his own specific chores he does on a regular basis. We also have a nanny come once a week for a couple hours to allow me to get things done. And every 3 months or so, he has a cleaning lady come give the house a good scrub. So, he doesn't do any of it himself, but he makes sure I don't get worn out doing it all either.
  • SabrinaLC
    January 10, 2013 at 9:02 AM

    Whoever gets to it first does it.  Although it seems like I'm always the one to get to the bathrooms first, lol!

    We alternate the dishes.  We have a dishwasher but still handwash some things.

  • Rach0307
    January 10, 2013 at 9:13 AM
    We don't really divide up chores. If the garbage needs taking out or dishes need doing, it's pretty much up for grabs, lol. DH does all of the outdoor cooking because he loves it, and I do all of the indoor cooking. I'm a SAHM, so I do all the major cleaning and laundry (although, DH often does his own uniforms). My son keeps his playroom tidy and helps me with all of my chores (he's only 3, so he thinks that being a helper is still fun), stuff like putting washed clothes in the laundry, moving things out of the way of the vacuum and holding the dustpan.
  • Xat
    by Xat
    January 10, 2013 at 9:20 AM

    My kids clean their rooms and all of their toys. I usually do all the other cleaning in the house. My hubby will wash dishes on the weekends and help cook dinner on the weekends.

  • MyMysMommie819
    January 10, 2013 at 11:46 AM

     We both work out of the house, but he normally does all the cooking and I do all the cleaning pretty much, I like to clean. =0) DD does help with cleanup though.

  • BeachMama05
    January 14, 2013 at 11:58 PM

    we both just clean as we go .. but I clean mostly cause DH works and I dont :)

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