Women do anywhere between 10 to 20 more hours of housework per week than their husbands do, according to a study released this week. Some women were surprised by the results.
“I’m floored,” said Julie Marcus, a financial analyst. “On the other hand, this explains so much. Last night after dinner, my husband said, ‘Thanks for that snack, honey,’ and I threw a sack of navel oranges at him. I was like, ‘My goodness! Where is all this resentment coming from?’ Now I understand!”
“I admit to being somewhat taken aback,” a lab technician named Naomi Hyde said after reading an article about the findings. “I had no idea that laundry and cooking and grocery shopping and cleaning amounts to so many hours a week. But that definitely sheds light on my chronic fatigue, and also the fact that I hurled a cantaloupe at my husband while he was napping on the couch yesterday.”
Some women acknowledged that they did more housework than their husbands, but said the disparity had not always been that way.
“When we first got married, we agreed to divide all the chores equally,” Etta Glover, a human resources manager, explained. “And it worked! For about five minutes. Then we had a baby. Now I can’t remember the last time a pomegranate made it through the day without being aimed at my husband’s head.”
Even though the study resonated with most women, a few defended the institution of marriage as totally worth it anyway.
“It’s a trade off,” said Glover. “On the one hand, I do more housework. But on the other hand I get to exhaustively research and plan our family vacation every year. So that’s one whole week a year that I get to kick back and drink mojitos while my husband plays in the swimming pool with the kids. Besides, what else would we do with the persimmons?”
“What’s the alternative?” said Hyde. “If I were unmarried, I might have much less housework to do, but I’d still get stuck changing the lightbulbs. And eating more bananas.”
One woman pointed out that though the study was enlightening, it gave a false impression.
“It may be that I do most of the housework,” said attorney Greta Miller. “But that doesn’t tell the whole story. I’m also the primary caregiver for our toddler, and responsible for everything that goes along with childcare for the older ones. I do the homework with the kids, for example. And the baths. Packing their lunches and schoolbags. Birthday party planning. School plays. Teacher meetings. Staying home on their sick days. Medical stuff. Driving them absolutely everywhere. What was my point again? Oh yeah. That my husband reads them a story each and every night just after I slingshot a Bosc pear his way. It’s the absolute sweetest!”
When asked if they would like the balance in their homes to change, the women gave varied answers.
“It depends what you mean by that question,” said Glover. “If the question is, ‘Do you wish that your husband would share the work more equally?’ then the answer is, ‘Sure. Why Not?’ But if the question is, ‘Do you wish that your husband would somehow magically transform himself into a berry-eating Centaur?’ then my answer would be exactly the same.”
“Frankly, I can’t imagine it any other way,” Marcus said. “I mean I’m thinking about what it would be like if my husband was the one doing the extra housework. And it would be, like, you know. It would be . . . Actually sorry, I can’t imagine it. Does anyone have a stalk of rhubarb handy?”
Some women expressed the hope that younger millennial women would share the housework more equally with their partners.
“That’s exactly what our mothers thought it would be like for us — more equality between us and our husbands,” Miller said. “So yeah. Maybe their hope skipped our generation and will go to the next one? Only time will tell. But there’s a watermelon sale over at the Stop & Shop, so I gotta run.”
“I’m not really bothered about the findings,” said Hyde. “I mean, look at Hillary Clinton. She probably did those extra hours of housework every week for years. And even though some believe she had the more promising career when they graduated Yale Law School, her husband got to be president first. But now she’ll finally have her turn! Or not. Whatever.”
Lead image: Pixabay