A little bit bitch and a little bit buddhist always at the intersection of biology, gender, race, and culture. This blog documents my experience as a Canadian postdoc living and working in the United States. I can't promise to be PG13. In fact I promise not to be PG13.
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This blog has been quiet for a couple of weeks because I am so overwhelmed by all that needs to get done to meet my goals. It may be quiet for a little while longer...
But I did read this and it made me wonder if each gender percieves what constitutes housework differently. Here is an excerpt:
An Oxford University study says if current trends continue, women will probably have to wait until 2050 before men are doing an equal share of the household chores and childcare. According to the paper published in the latest issue of the journal Sociology, ‘substantial and persistent obstacles’ remain.
The amount of time women spend on routine housework still ‘dwarfs’ time spent on non-routine domestic jobs carried out by men. Nevertheless, there is evidence to show that the gender gap in housework and child care has been narrowing gradually. Women’s time spent on caring and chores in the home declined gradually from about 360 minutes a day in the 1960s for both the UK and US to 280 and 272 minutes, respectively, in the early 2000s. In the UK and the US, men went from spending 90 and 105 minutes a day, respectively, on housework and child care in the 1960s to 148 and 173 minutes in the early part of this millennium. However, the data suggests that the upward trend for men may have levelled off in some countries in recent years.
I think that HippieHusband and I are generally equal in the amount of cleaning, cooking and laundry that we do. I am probably more fussy about the cleaning so I tend to do more of it but less frequently. He prefers things to be clean on a daily basis so he does little bits of cleaning more frequently. We alternate who cooks and does dishes. I probably cook more but then he does more dishes. Of course we have gone weeks where we're both so out of our mind busy that nothing gets done. I imagine that things might be less equal if children entered the equation.
What's it like in your household?
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Err...I have roomates. And we prefer that I cook, in exchange they clean. The other two do cook for themselves from time to time, but let's just say I've come out of my room more than once to the smell of something burning in the kitchen. I say it's a fair tradeoff. Plus I'm the only one who cleans my room and my bathroom.
I think we split things pretty equally, but Whitney will probably tell you that we don't. Pretty much she does all of the insude the house chores and I do all of the outside of the house chores. We split making dinner on the week days (I start it, she finishes it). She spends more time cleaning than I do on my chores. I offer to help, but she says that I don't do stuff right and she'd rather do it herself :P
He does way more house work than I do. He works at home so he can do things during the day- like foodshop- when the store is quiet. He does the laundry for us most of the time- it's easier to get the community washing machines during the day instead of the weekends. (It's mostly his clothes anyway, he won't wear something twice. Obviously he didn't grow up in a big family where you had to conserve your clothes because the turn around time for laundry was pretty long. Fortunately, the weather is mild so I am not sweating every day, like if I lived in Florida.)
He does most of the cleaning because he likes a clean place. I'm pretty messy.
If we have dinner at home, I cook. Cooking is not something he does well. (But he does make my lunch every day for work.) Dinner is typically the easiest thing possible to make or we eat out a lot because of our after work activities or because I tend to work late.
I have it pretty easy right now when it comes to chores.
I also have it easy. My husband is a bit of a neat freak and I don't clean 'right' so I've learned to just let him do it. We're about even on the cooking and other chores.
Kids do make a difference. When our foster daughter is with us, we revert to more traditional roles, with me doing all the cooking, laundry and organizing.