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division of chores

 
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I am an indifferent cook. My husband is an indifferent cleaner. He cooks and I clean. Because I worked part time and he worked full time, I also did everything else. And I mean everything! But we have made it work for 35 years.
 
pollinator
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M Wilcox wrote:I had suggested long ago that my wife write a book and she nixed that idea immediately so I didn't have much hope that she would want to blog either. Nevertheless, I pitched the idea yesterday and she thought it was a great idea! In fact she setup a blog yesterday and already has done her first post!



That's wonderful! She could also write about your struggles, to reassure people, as it's often an uphill battle when you're a beginner. That will also be a way for both of you to talk about it, and put it into words that might actually be helpful for others.
 
pollinator
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M Wilcox wrote:So, I have this situation in my house. I enjoy working. I work outside and sometimes I work inside fixing things or building things or creating space for things or sewing for money, etc.
On the other hand, my partner does not like to work. My partner likes to sit on the sofa and write in her journal or cruise the internet.
. But she says it is not okay to treat her like a housewife.
I prefer the term homemaker but it seems to me that when one partner does the lion's share of the work and the other partner just benefits from that work without actually doing any work themselves, there's a distinct lack of balance.




My friend, it sounds like you guys have already had "The Argument" and resentment is starting to set in. That is how marriages fail. Sometimes, just because we are "living the situation", we may feel like we are doing everything and the partner is coasting and benefitting without contributing. You may be absolutely correct or, as resentment has set in, you may looking at the situation the only way you can, which is through YOUR lenses. It is hard, but try to see if that is what is happening or if you are falling out of love. IMHO, you are ripe for a little marriage counseling, which I would not presume to do from here.
All I can offer are a few pointers, depending if the love is still there. [If it is not, the marriage counseling won't do a thing for the two of you.]
Your partner seems to have a better relationship with the internet, which can be terribly addictive, and she is neglecting you and the homestead. As the arguments increase, she will come to realize as you have that something has to give. Is she in a position to call it quits, or would she limp through, but resentfully?
Your partner does not want to be a "housewife" but it sounds like she is failing to be a valuable partner as well, and that will cause love to falter eventually, I will assume that discussions are getting tense on the topic of sharing chores. Do you feel that you still have anything in common? Was this homestead *your* dream, and she acquiesced because she loved you? Or was it her dream as well but she is discouraged somehow? and if she is, why?
Ask yourself: What is your financial situation? Any kids in the mix? If the worst happens and you have to call it quits, do you have a "golden parachute" of sorts? [A way to extricate yourself without causing too much harm to your finances or worse, to the children?]
Divorce is very painful for both partners but also for the children. I wish I could be more helpful, but I really think that the two of you may soon need professional help.
The "sharing of chores" arguments may just be a symptom of greater trouble.
 
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My friend, it sounds like you guys have already had "The Argument" and resentment is starting to set in. That is how marriages fail.



Wow, there must be a high divorce rate amongst the permies because it seems that splitting up over disagreements is the default. Not very permaculture, is it?

Since I wrote my initial post re: sharing chores, my wife and I have had a couple serious discussions about our respective contributions to the homestead. As one very helpful person suggested, I asked the wifey if she'd be willing to do a blog about our homestead and she was thrilled with the idea! She got started the same day and is writing the 4th installment today.

Also, I was able (finally) to address the disparity in workloads in a way that got through to her. I asked her what she IS willing to do and she named several chores that she had previously agreed to take on but kept "forgetting" to do. I suggested her setting a repeating alarm for each one as a reminder. She liked the idea and set the alarms. For some reason, that took the dread out of the tasks for her. She doesn't have to think about them, remember them, forget them and then get a talking to, etc. She goes about her biz, the alarm rings and she does the chore, then goes back to what she was doing. No stress. It's working beautifully and she actually is enjoying the tasks now and the sense of accomplishment and contribution she feels. The better she feels about herself, the more she wants to do. She's been washing dishes and straightening the kitchen each morning, making the bed and even sweeping the floor!

I was only bringing in firewood to make her happy and I resented it because I had other things to do and wasn't enjoying the warm house as much as she was. So I simply quit being the default wood carrier. She likes to be warm so when the firewood needs bringing in, she goes and gets it so she can be warm. I bring in a load now and then too so she won't feel she's the only one doing it. As for me, I'd just keep putting on layers until I could see my breath in the house because I have other tasks that take priority over hauling firewood until I get really uncomfortably cold.

I suspect that her blog has had some effect on her desire to contribute, since it wouldn't sound very good to write, "M spent the morning putting down fresh straw in the chicken run, cleaning out the nest boxes and dusting the hens for mites while I sat on my ass on the sofa playing an RPG."

So, things are looking much more equitable on the homestead, and we never once had a discussion about who would get custody of the cats (her) and the hens (me) when we inevitably get divorced over the chores.
 
Cécile Stelzer Johnson
pollinator
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M Wilcox wrote:

My friend, it sounds like you guys have already had "The Argument" and resentment is starting to set in. That is how marriages fail.



Wow, there must be a high divorce rate amongst the permies because it seems that splitting up over disagreements is the default. Not very permaculture, is it?

Since I wrote my initial post re: sharing chores, my wife and I have had a couple serious discussions about our respective contributions to the homestead. As one very helpful person suggested, I asked the wifey if she'd be willing to do a blog about our homestead and she was thrilled with the idea! She got started the same day and is writing the 4th installment today.



I'm so glad to hear you solved it. Kudos to the two of you.
 
You're not going crazy. You're going sane in a crazy word. Find comfort in this tiny ad:
"Permaculture Now! - Desert or Paradise?" movie by Sepp Holzer
https://permies.com/wiki/137395/Permaculture-Desert-Paradise-movie-Sepp
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