21 April 2009

Yes we can!

Probably one of the most difficult things to learn in a marriage is teamwork. There's no milk left in the fridge? He picks it up on the way home. The dog needs to go to the vet ASAP, but he's stuck in meetings? Maybe you can drive the dog there, while he agrees to pick the kids up from school later. This give-and-take cooperative isn't always easy; most of the tasks we need to learn to share end up changing daily!

When Mr. Bear Cub and I moved in together, we tried to tackle this aspect of our relationship with a gameplan. The easiest thing to pin down is house chores - they're always there, constantly needing to be done. again. and again. We decided that if there was one chore that either of us detested, and the other was more ambivalent towards, that person could be off the hook. That's to say, if you can't stand doing any one particular chore around the house, your partner loves you so much that they'll always do that chore for you.

Obviously this works best (most visibly) with big chores, things that always stack up. I hate doing dishes. I hate it. My skin is left really dry and my nails really brittle. I cook the most often, so it's really tiring to have to wash dishes after hours of cooking. He, on the other hand, hates doing laundry. He's not really familiar with separating lights and darks, and only knows one setting on the washer. Solution: I do all of the laundry, and he does all of the dishes. Always!

Before you start thinking that I got the better end of the stick here, it's not all black and white. I don't mind putting dishes away, but he sees a mountain of clean dishes as a reason to not clean more (there's no room to put more dishes in the drying rack). No problem, I put the dishes away after he cleans them!

Obviously there are innumerable more things that we help each other out with daily - this is just one example of the simplest way we've found to share our responsibilities.

How are you learning to be a team with your fiancé? Is he responsible for some specific chores, and you others?

1 comment:

  1. sigh. sometimes i feel like i have the only boyfriend in the world who won't do dishes. i feel like i bear the brunt of housework, but according to him my perception is wrong because he does plenty of chores. i dunno who's right. this is a post all its own in the works.