I’m not going to assume that every man knows that they should do household chores even though we don’t live in the days when men work and women faced the home ONLY.
Even though we are living in 2019, some men are still stuck in the 1980s. Or, their legs are in 2019 but their heads in 1980s.
Women are expected to share the bills and also see that things go well at the home front.
According to a study which shows the persistent gendered nature of division of housework in Toronto, “women tend to do more household chores than their male partners, no matter how much they work or earn in a job outside the home.”
Gender roles are giving way to civilization as modern couples now adopt whatever method that works best for them. Some men are even becoming house husbands!
However, some men are rigid and want to eat their cake and have it.
You don’t have to die in silence if this is your case, even if you’re a stay at home mum.
People think stay at home mums have the whole time in the world, so they don’t need help with household chores.
Just because women don’t get paid for what they do at home doesn’t mean they work lesser than the spouse who earns the family income.
This post is for women who need their husbands to do household chores because they’re overwhelmed and don’t have any help at all, because, sincerely, it’s difficult to achieve work-home balance without help.
Sure-fire Tips on How to Get Your Husband to do Household Chores
Assess yourself and your situation
The first step of any intervention process is assessment. Assess yourself and your home – do you need help?
I hate to use the word ‘help’ because everyone who lives in the house is expected to see that the house is in order. But, for lack of a better word, let’s settle for that.
Again, do you need help? Can you do it all alone? If you can’t, keep reading.
Stop being a superwoman!
I don’t know about you but I’m not a superwoman. I can’t do it all alone. I have a career that demands a lot of time and concentration and an active eight months old. I hardly have time for myself, despite the fact that my husband does the laundry, vacuums the house, we both do the dishes while I cook.
I can’t imagine him leaving all the household chores to me. It’s just us, no help.
So, I’m not a superwoman and I’m not trying to be one.
In fact, I’m one already. Every mum is a superwoman. LOL.
A lot of newlyweds (women) try to do it all to prove to their husbands that they’re ‘wife material’. They cook, clean, wash, and go to work while the husbands only go to work.
Don’t start what you cannot finish. Why should the man do household chores when he sees you’re handling everything quite alright?
If you need help, stop being a superwoman who can do it all.
Ask him and even delegate tasks to him
A lot of women assume that their husbands should know that they need help, so they don’t ask.
Assumption is the lowest level of knowledge.
Even the Bible says, “Ask, and it shall be given unto you.”
If God needs you to ask, how much more a human?
We all wish that we have spouses who are always sensitive to our needs, but they are humans and not mind readers.
Your husband might think you’re doing just fine without his help. Asking him to do some chores is a way to let him know you can’t do it alone, and you need his help.
Even though hubby does some household chores without me asking, sometimes, I ask.
“Could you help with the dishes?”
“When next are you doing the laundry?”
“Could you get me some water, please?”
Ensure you ask respectfully. Everyone deserves that, and just because he’s your husband doesn’t change that.
Don’t stop asking
Truth is, most men don’t like being asked to do stuff.
But don’t stop asking if he turns down your request. It’s just a proof that you need help.
I believe a man who loves you won’t continually turn you down when you request his help. He’ll want you to be happy.
Discuss and have an agreement about tasks
I do the cooking at home because I love cooking.
Hubby does the laundry and cleaning, we both do the dishes, I love cleaning the bathroom, so I do it more. Then we do some other tasks as we deem fit.
We just picked up these household chores based on our interests. Of course, when he saw that I wasn’t the cleaning and laundry type, he took them up.
Remember what I said about not being a superwoman?
So, if your husband isn’t lifting a pin in the house and you are overwhelmed, have a talk about it with him and decide which tasks each of you should do especially if you have kids that can’t do any chores yet.
Have a talk on who should do what – cook, clean, wash/service the cars, get the kids ready for school, take the kids to school etc.
However, leave room for change and flexibility.
You can switch tasks sometimes or do the tasks your spouse does when the needs arise.
Sometimes, I do my laundry, I vacuum the house and hubby fixes his meals when necessary.
When assigning tasks, do what works for you and don’t try to fit into societal constructed gender roles. It’s not compulsory that a woman should do the cooking or shop for groceries. A man can do these as well. Interest is what matters.
The point is just that, all hands must be on deck to get the home running. That’s the point of this post. It’s not fair to leave a person to it.
Request for paid help
Just because your husband doesn’t want to do household chores doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you. He might just be lazy or not be the domesticated type.
And if all efforts to get him to do household chores fail, request for a paid help(s).
Get someone to do the cleaning, laundry, and even cooking. Just outsource some tasks in order to relieve you and not get overwhelmed with household chores; because they never end.
You can agree on how to pay the help(s).
I know this option is quite expensive in the western world. But in Africa, you can get these services at cheaper prices.
Do the little you can per time
Some women lament that their husbands do not do household chores and do not want strangers (helps) in their homes.
That’s selfishness, I must say.
If this is your spouse, I’d advise you to do the little you can and not overwork yourself trying to put everything in order. Just prioritize and do what is most important per time.
It’s okay to leave the house untidy but safe for the kids (if you can stand it).
I have an active eight months old who is trying to discover the environment, so I don’t care if the sitting room is disorganized for some days, as long as it’s safe for her.
Stop trying to do everything if you’re tired. Do the important and urgent things and do the rest at your own pace.
Let him know you’re stressed
If you’re not getting any help at home and your body is giving you warning signals, please let your husband know. Don’t keep quiet because you don’t want to be tagged a nagging wife.
They say behind every nagging wife is a husband who isn’t doing what he’s supposed to do. This is true in this case.
Keeping quiet when you’re not happy shows you’re fine with the way things are.
I’m not saying you should become a nagging wife, because nagging creates negative vibes.
I’m saying you should let your husband know how you’re feeling.
I believe a loving husband will not ignore his wife’s frequent complaints.
Some women have gone as far as fainting and getting admitted in the hospital just to prove to their spouses that they’re stressed. They just had to take a break from the strenuous routine.
A lot of women are unhappy because they’re struggling with balancing their career and the family.
A stressed woman is not a happy woman, and what is marriage without a happy wife?
Appreciate his efforts
You can never go wrong with gratitude.
Appreciation is a positive reinforcement strategy that promises the recurrence and maintenance of a desirable behaviour.
Always appreciate your husband for his efforts, even if he doesn’t do it perfectly or the way you want. Correct him in a loving way instead of complaining and discouraging him from doing household chores.
Use the phrase “thank you” without restriction. It’s just normal courtesy.
We say ‘thank you’ to strangers when they help us. Marriage doesn’t make your spouse less human, you should still give him the respect that you would a random person.
In fact, it’s in marriage that we should practice courtesy more often. Charity begins at home.
Hubby usually says, ”thank you” whenever I fix his meal. This makes me happy and assures me that my effort is appreciated.
Appreciate your spouse for whatever they do – cooking, paying the bills, birthing your baby/babies, cleaning the house, doing the laundry, washing the car etc…
Talk to a third party he respects
It’s popular opinion that involving third parties in marriage is a bad move but this isn’t always true.
The most important factor is who you the third party is.
Sometimes, you might need a respected third party to get through to your husband if he’s adamant.
Third party could be a respected religious leader, parent, sibling, or friend; anyone he looks up to.
Make sure the person is knowledgeable and wise, so that things will not be further complicated.
Pray for him
I’m a Christian who strongly believes in the power of prayer. I believe God is interested in every minute detail of our lives.
If you’ve done all without result, pray.
Commit the heart of your husband unto God’s hands and trust Him to work on it.
The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian is an ever relevant book on marriage. I read it when I didn’t even know when I’d be getting married, and the lessons still stay with me.
Above all, make sure you don’t nurse any bitterness in your heart against your husband. The devil is a roaring lion looking for a family to devour and you can give place to the devil through bitterness.
I hope these tips help you when you apply them.