What is the Key to a Good Marriage … Are You Kidding … Sharing House Work???


The PEW Research Center has done a survey on what factors that people associate with You_Must_Be_Jokinga successful marriage. You will be surprised what “trivial” factor actually came in first. Sharing house work? Are you joking? That is correct, respondents chose, Do dishes, not diapers. The percentage of Americans that ranked “children” very important to a successful marriage has dropped considerably since 1990. Could someone please explain to me how the top factors provided for a successful marriage did not include ahead of Sharing house work the following: communication, faithfulness, children, intimacy, and heaven forbid a religious faith. WHAT IS YOUR RESPONSE THAT IS A MAJOR FACTOR TO A GOOD MARRIAGE … LET’S HEAR YOUR ANSWERS.

Chore-sharing was cited as very important by 62 percent of respondents, up from 47 percent in 1990.

The survey also found that, by a margin of nearly 3-to-1, Americans say the main purpose of marriage is the “mutual happiness and fulfillment” of adults rather than the “bearing and raising of children.”

The Pew Research Center survey on marriage and parenting found that children had fallen to eighth out of nine on a list of factors that people associate with successful marriages _ well behind “sharing household chores,” “good housing,” “adequate income,” a “happy sexual relationship” and “faithfulness.” (The Washington Post)

The Pew survey was conducted by telephone from mid-February through mid-March among a random, nationwide sample of 2,020 adults. Its margin of error is 3 percentage points.

Have people really become that selfish and petty?

Kidding yourself if you think children make a marriage

What a sad commentary of marriage and individuals that would be so selfish that in todays environment, “Marriage today, like the rest of our lives, is about personal satisfaction.”

In a study that shows how separately marriage and children are viewed, Americans expressed great passion for their sons and daughters but clearly did not see them as the glue of their adult relationships.

“Marriage today, like the rest of our lives, is about personal satisfaction,” said Andrew Cherlin, who teaches sociology and public policy at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, noting that there were mixed consequences for the changing views of marriage. (Sidney Morning Herald)

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  • Comments

    20 Responses to “What is the Key to a Good Marriage … Are You Kidding … Sharing House Work???”

    1. Janet on July 1st, 2007 1:38 pm


      Despite the bumps in the road … fresh out of high school (18 years old) and … 42 years later …

    2. Nut44x4 on July 1st, 2007 2:16 pm

      My “X” husband (notice I said X) lived in our HOUSE and he WORKED …at his job. That was his idea of “Housework”.
      MHO, lol.

    3. Scared Monkeys on July 1st, 2007 3:27 pm

      #2, my point is that I can think that there are far greater factors to a successful marriage than house work.

      If it is the case, then marriage as an institution is doomed.

    4. sparrow on July 1st, 2007 3:30 pm

      Respect and Honesty. I’ve been a widow for 18 years, and I still miss him.

      We were good to each other>>Janet’s right.

    5. Scared Monkeys on July 1st, 2007 3:41 pm

      #1 & #4 … Agreed 100%.


    6. bleachedblack on July 1st, 2007 3:56 pm

      Maybe housework in and of itself is not the issue. But it is the one mundane day to day thing that needs to be done, and no one loves to do it. If one person alone has the responsibility
      despite the fact that often both people(husband and wife in this article) hold a job outside the home, this tends to cause resentment. Lets just say it’s much more difficult to get lovey dovey with a guy after you’ve spent the week washing his underwear, sweeping, cooking, etc etc if after work he is sipping beer on the couch asking when is dinner ready? If I wanted a life of servitude, I’d work for the government.

    7. joe bear on July 1st, 2007 3:58 pm

      I have all ways done my share of house and yard work.It seems fair,and it helps with Domestic Tranquility,you the nothing and silent treatment,hehe

    8. Susan on July 1st, 2007 6:40 pm

      Tis a bit funny isn’t it? I don’t think it (sharing the responsibilities of housework) will ever catch on…LOL ;-)

    9. Glaswegian on July 1st, 2007 6:46 pm

      I agree — who does and doesn’t do housework is not in and itself the key. The key is love and respect for each other. If both spouses work and share mutual respect who does the housework shouldn’t be the issue. Respecting each other as equals means sharing things as equals, including housework. I have been married for 35 years and there have been times when one or the other of us have been much busier than the other with work, professional groups, etc. (and on my husband’s part being on WESTPAC with the Navy which made it hard for him to help at home!) We have always shared the load, sometimes with one or the other of us picking up a larger share depending on circumstances. Happily, we both have different dislikes so we do what we like and the other does what they like. I feed the cats and my husband cleans the litter box!

      So, my point is if you respect your partner then wanting to share things with them and perhaps make things easier for them in our day to day lives then housework is usually part of that.


    10. Robert on July 1st, 2007 7:19 pm

      Yes, be good to eachother; that’s a good one. But she has to understand that I can’t clean up the rooms in the house (…) . Men can’t see all the dust and all those little unidentified particles.

      Last I discovered (actualy my girlfriend pointed me at it) we have skirtings along the wall. Didn’t know that. Thought that thin grey line on top of what turned out to be the skirting was a decorationline on the wallpaper. It was dust… DUST. Can you believe that? I live their already some 6 or 7 years and never had noticed it! I ask you!!!

      I cook the food. I buy stuff, groceries – if she’s left some money in MY wallet. And I wash the dishes, the glasses and all that. That is a fair deal isn’t it?

      But why do wo have to discuss that every two weeks? That’s my big question? ;-)

    11. Eyes for Lies on July 1st, 2007 7:41 pm

      Sharing of housework is an interesting measure of a relationship yet I think quite an good predictor of happiness. It’s the sign of the overall health of a relationship.

      When a couple is in the unity for the betterment of two — they will work as a “team” — side-by-side until all responsibilities and obligations are met.

      When there is a selfish person in the mix, one will be left will all the burden…which doesn’t bring anyone happiness, fulfillment or satisfaction.

      Odd, maybe. But perhaps very true.

    12. bleachedblack on July 1st, 2007 7:48 pm

      #10 You are a funny guy. To be good to each other is a good thing, to be kept laughing ain’t bad either ! wink wink

    13. katablog.com on July 1st, 2007 8:22 pm

      marriage just ain’t what it use to be. I would say that a husband helping with child rearing and housework is a husband who loves his wife and is listening.

      Communication along with both having the same ideals and goals is key. But I do think these things are demonstrated when both spouses work together for the common good. It shows love and respect and a partnership.

      Unfortunately people see marriage these days more or less like a job – if you don’t like it, find another. It’s no longer seen as a life long commitment and that’s a shame because out of that commitment comes life lessons about working together to work things out. Knowing you can’t leave when the going gets tough, keeps you working hard to make things work.

    14. Joanie on July 1st, 2007 8:35 pm

      My husband and I have broken every one of Dr Phil’s rules. We knew each other a whole 2 months before we got married. April 1st made 7 years for us. Its the 2nd time around for both of us – maybe we knew what to do this time. Everyday for us starts and ends with a good belly laugh. Lots of hugs and a smoochie here and there. We have a wonderful ability to discuss everything without getting into an argument. I put him through the ‘in sickness’ part alot harder than I ever wanted to, but he remained at my side the entire time. We are both positive about our lives and we both agree on what we want to do in the future. He is 54 and I am 49. Not kids! And…laughter really IS the best medicine!

    15. Maggie on July 1st, 2007 10:03 pm

      4 grown kids and almost 26 years later for me… I agree, Respect and honesty and communication and never allow your kids to play one parent against the other when they want to do something. Tough love is one of the best ideas around. Don’t be afraid to swallow your pride when you are wrong. My husband didn’t mind helping with housework, we usually had our kids plus the neighborhood kids are our house evenings, weekends and summers. Best way to lose weight and your sanity , actually we loved it.. lol.

      a little humor.

      My wife and I have the secret to making a marriage last:

      Two times a week, we go to a nice restaurant, have a little wine,
      some good food and companionship.
      She goes Tuesdays, I go Fridays.

      We also sleep in separate beds.
      Hers is in Sydney and mine is in Melbourne.

      I take my wife everywhere, but she keeps finding her way back.

      I asked my wife where she wanted to go for our anniversary.
      “Somewhere I haven’t been in a long time!” she said.
      So I suggested the kitchen.

      We always hold hands. If I let go, she shops.

      She has an electric blender, electric toaster and electric bread maker
      Then she said, “There are too many gadgets and no place to sit down!”.
      So I bought her an electric chair. YIKESS!

      Remember…. Marriage is the number one cause of divorce.
      Statistically, 100% of all divorces started with marriage.

      I married Miss Right. I just didn’t know her first name was Always.

      I haven’t spoken to my wife for 18 months. I don’t like to interrupt her.

      The last fight was my fault. My wife asked, “What’s on the TV?”….
      I said, “Dust!”

      In the beginning, God created earth and rested.
      Then God created man and rested.
      Then God created woman.
      Since then, neither God nor man has rested.

      Why do men die before their wives? ‘Cause they want to’.

    16. Brenda on July 2nd, 2007 9:29 am

      #10. VERY good point. My husband would not realize I had not cleaned the house until he could not longer get into the front door…really.

      We both work and yes, I do the inside housework. He does the outside work. What is that some of you women say? It’s mowing our 15+ acres of “yard”, cutting out 36+ acres of hay, managing our 243+ acres of mountain land, working on the farm equipment, doing ALL car repairs, doing ALL house repairs…AND working 40 hours a week like me.

      I say poster #1 got it right, although Bleached black had an excellent point that the fact one partner resents having to pull part of the load for the other is the issue.

      Got married at 19 and have been to the same guy for 23+ yrs now. Somehow, I have figured out at this point he just ain’t gonna do the house work from the inside view!

      Let me guess…I should divorce him for that, or look down on him? No way! Think I”ll just keep up my end of the deal and not be a spoiled b1tch and complain.


    17. flippy on July 2nd, 2007 10:10 am

      Bah! These surveys never mean much, you can bend statistics to say whatever you want to.

      From what I read, they interviewed about 2000 adults. They did not interview 2000 _married_ adults. From the stats, only about 70ish% of the interview targets had EVER BEEN MARRIED. Before I was married I would have ranked personal happiness as more important than the well being of kids that I haven’t even worked into the equation yet; that didn’t happen until I got a bit closer to the event.

      Then factor in that out of the 70% that have ever been married, that about 10% of those are infertile, and you are down to 63% of the respondants as relavant. (A married infertile couple is unlikely to rank “Child Bearing” as critical to the relationship).

      The same survey also says (to quote)
      “About 85 per cent of parents with children under 18 described those relationships as a top source of personal fulfilment”.

      This is the counterpoint…Of the adults that acutally HAVE kids, 85% of them have very healthy relationships with them. Notice this includes the parents of 12-16 year olds (the height of teenagerdom); Personally my kids are just entering this age bracked and I hope that I can remain in this 85% through the storm that lies ahead.

    18. Brenda on July 2nd, 2007 10:57 am

      Flippy…I love it. Why am I not surprised? I live in an area where we have Amish in carts pulled by mules…old men (farmers) still driving their 1949 Chevy trucks, women who hunt, kill, field dress, and (yes) drag the animal out of the woods themselves. In other words, hard work doesn’t hurt or scare us any (although many fear it greatly :>) You should see my 5’4″ 120 pound frame chop an 8 ft. bed of oak with a maul/axe!! I LOVE it. Keeps my 43 yr old body in great shape!!

      Bet I could take a “poll” in my neighborhood and find 100% of the women do not feel it is their husband’s responsibility to do any inside housework at all! Depends on who you ask, really. If mine wanted to help, I’d let him, but would have to go back and be sure he didn’t use draino in the dishwasher….



    19. flippy on July 2nd, 2007 3:30 pm

      Well, my last thoughts on the subject are:

      If someone does not want children, then by all means PLEASE DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN. Of course children have a habit of turning up when you least expect them, but anyone who hangs around enough young couples knows at least one parent who “never really wanted kids”, and they are (as a group) terrible parents. Even if you are born and raised to think that your main purpose in life is to raise children, but deep down inside you have doubts that you want to, then don’t.

    20. chloe on July 3rd, 2007 8:08 pm

      I have to agree with everyone who has said the issue is BIGGER than housework. It’s about respecting your better half. This was (sometimes still is) an issue that my husband and I had. I literally do everything in my house and everything for my children with zero help and I work. Most days I feel like I don’t get a second to breathe. I’ve basically given up trying. So I can feel the frustrations of others who put this first because it is an bigger issue than it seems on the surface.

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