Rebalancing housework

When we first moved to DC and D was looking for work, he took on most of the housekeeping roles.  After all, he was home, and I was putting in some extra hours settling into my new job and trying to make a good impression.  He unpacked all our boxes from our move, took care of all the chores, and he even got stuck with a lot of the wedding planning!

Those were some good days.  I’d come home to dinner cooking on the stove, my laundry magically back in the closet, the toilet sparkling.  It was exactly like being a kid again, where you might take care of a few chores, but mostly someone else took care of everything.

After D went back to school, he was gone more than I was, between his classes and his work in the lab.  By then, I’d gotten very used to not lifting a finger around the house.  I bemoan the loss of my stay-at-home husband as laundry piled up, we started running out of pantry staples, and we started squabbling over who was doing more.

Eventually we reached a truce where we’d each do what needed doing.  It wasn’t perfect – I still could be found searching all over for a white blouse that was still in the laundry basket, and clutter built up in certain areas, but we almost made it work.

Now that D’s not working, but is still in school, I’ve been tempted to go back to my lazy ways. Imagine me whining, “but I worked all day!” in a  nasal voice, vowels stretch long to express just how unfair all this equality is for me.  And I do expect D to take over some of the chores that just couldn’t get done when we were both working.

Still, it’s not fair for me to expect him to do everything, especially since he does have classes and a job search to worry about.  Also, he’ll be heading back to work in less than a year – once he graduates –  so it’s probably good for me not to get accustomed to indolence. (No matter how much I’d like to!)

Neither D nor I are very neat normally, and it’s very easy to let the mess build up!  I’m curious to see how others deal with this – especially people who aren’t naturally neat!

Anyone have any tips?  How do you deal with housework?


One Response

  1. We have not done it yet, but we are on the cusp of hiring a cleaning service. Maybe even once every 2 weeks, but once every 4 minimum.

    I was talking with a group of career women at work today, and all the women with kids had one, and a few of without. The opinions ranged from “it is SO great” to “It has changed my life!”

    So that’s our non-frugal solution for the big stuff. Dinner and day-to-day stuff doesn’t overwhelm me so much. (T said our current plan is 40/40, and the rest just doesn’t get done.)

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