Friday, November 11, 2011

And Then He Washed the Dishes

Gender roles in our house are non-existent.

At least in theory.

In my head, I feel it is my responsibility to handle the day-to-day tasks and household duties.  These include big things like, making and keeping appointments, changing banks, finding the best health care for our family, and small things like, keeping up on dishes and laundry, vacuuming, and cleaning the bathrooms, etc.

Recently, after something happened in our family that I actually will not talk about on here (I know, the full disclosure queen, and I am not sharing everything), the dynamics in our family shifted.

For starters, I came home one evening to a clean house, clean clothes, a hot meal, and an empty sink next to a full dishwasher.

This has been the typical routine around here, I go to work, Ben does his thing, he comes home and cleans the house, picks the kids up, picks me up, and we all enter into a delightfully organized home.

I am adjusting to this new reality--a reality that includes sharing responsibility--and feeling pretty lucky with this arrangement.

Surprise, surprise, I also do not feel guilt with leaving things for Ben to complete.  It's refreshing.  I think we are becoming a team.  And it's really nice.


  1. uh love when this happens in my house too!

  2. Lucky you! I love it when life demands changes from us and how they open our eyes to what we can do, how we can support each other more fully. (By the way, I notice when we are gone the house keeps itself much much more nicely clean then when we spend days at home. But still the dishes and laundry pile up.)
    I think it's important for kids to see both parents doing the household work. It is not women's or men's work, but work of life that must be done, and should be shared.

  3. That's the only way we survive in our house! It was hard for me to let Nathan complete household chores at first, but then I realized I was working and doing my fair share. Why worry about gender roles and societal expectations. You are so lucky to have a husband like Ben :)

  4. That's awesome!

    Since Grant and I have always shared the provider and student roles (we've always both been in school and working a ton while we've been married), we've always shared the housekeeping stuff too. It is no one person's responsibility and I love it that way. Even with Bracken's birth and Grant's graduation and my quitting work, the housework is still divided relatively even. I am more heavy on the cleaning (most days) but Grant is a lot more heavy in the finances/healthcare department (again, most days). At the beginning of our marriage, we both took one of those awesome childhood development classes from your major and I remember the thing that struck me most was that most couples dropped in marital satisfaction right after having a baby, not because they were stressed from the baby but stressed from the alteration of their roles and where to divide household labor. I just don't consider keeping the house clean by myself part of being a homemaker. I don't know if that's a feminist attitude but I saw how much strain the attitude that woman=cleaner put on my mom and I didn't want that to happen to me. So Grant and I yacked it out long before we ever married and we've been mostly good at it since. :) We decided neither of us is ever allowed to get so busy that we don't feel like have the time to help in the housework. Isn't marriage awesome?

    Love ya!


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