Lazy husband? Blame yourself

By admin
20 May 2011

A week night in many South African households probably looks something like this: dad watches the news at seven while a toddler creates chaos around him and one of the older children is engrossed in her cellphone.

Mom meanwhile washes dishes, shoves a load of laundry into the washing machine, yells at her daughter to get off the

phone and do her homework and asks her husband to take out the garbage.

Meanwhile the toddler still has to be bathed and put to bed.

Despite this woman having spent all day working, making the same sort of tough decisions as her husband, possibly managing staff and sitting in peak-hour traffic, coming home doesn’t mean the end to her day. It’s just the beginning of another job.

And it’s a job without helpers, a UK study carried out last year found.

Women still do 82 per cent of housework – about 10 hours a week. Earlier this year, a French study found in 64 per cent of heterosexual couples the woman did all the cleaning, compared with 32 per cent where housework was shared.

In only four per cent of couples surveyed did men do all the housework. An American survey found one in five couples argued about housework every month.

“I feel like a slave in my own home,” Annette Cloete* of Cape Town says.

“My husband and children never think to get up and help. I get nothing for it. Sometimes I just want to drop everything and run away, that’s how bad it has become.”

Many South African women share Annette’s frustration but experts suggest if you find yourself in the same boat – if you take on the bulk of the house­work while your partner and kids sit back and do nothing – it’s your fault.

Get the YOU issue, 26 May 2011 for tips on how to get your husband and children to help.CLICK HERE to follow us on Twitter.

*Not her real name.

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