(This is post is part of a series. I share our experiences from my perspective from just over a year of being married. I am no expert and only share some experiences and thoughts that can help start enriching conversations, at least)
Chores are not fun but must be done! Before Ingrid and I got married, our premarital counselor asked who was going to do what chores. We could not give a straight answer on most things. I do not have the patience to calculate every cent when it comes to bank charges but Ingrid does.
Part of our lounge is my office… It is difficult for me to concentrate in clutter, so my work ritual starts with a ‘de-cluttering’ exercise, which often includes use of a vacuum cleaner. I do not particularly enjoy the whole tidying up exercise but it helps me do better the things that I need to do and enjoy doing. Thoughts / lessons:
For the never married (and hopeful):
- For the never married (and hopeful), you are not likely to figure out all the chores until you actually get married and you start doing everyday life together. There are other dynamics that you may not be aware of until you actually have to do what you commit to before you are married. While it is advisable and helpful to discuss who is going to be responsible for what, keep in mind and be open to possibility of adjustments.
- There are chores we both do not like but the times we have done them together made them more bearable. Doing chores you do not like with someone you love makes it easier to get the chores out of the way. Partnership is important in helping you get past chores you do not like.
- In the book Five Love Languages, Gary Chapman highlights acts of service as one of the practical expressions of love. This can be a big deal especially if this is someone’s strongest love language. Doing chores you do not like can be a practical expression of your love. (For more you might want to read ‘How people stop caring about what matters’). This may be cliché for some, but for chores I hate doing but have to do, I write them off as an expression and labor of love.
- Marriage teaches and reminds me of the importance of partnerships and teamwork… In smaller teams, it is easy to identify the slackers. Thus, accountability is important in team contexts, especially as teams grow larger.
- Change does not magically happen; it must be caused. Nothing changes unless you actually do something about it. You can never wish chores away. Do not think too hard about what must be done and just do it!
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For the married: how do you handle your chores? For the never married and hopeful: I would love to hear your thoughts too!