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‘Tough love’: Woman shares why husbands promise to be equal partners, but never change

Research shows that couples are becoming more egalitarian as it pertains to income. But when it comes to the division of domestic labor and taking care of families, there is still a considerable gap between the work done by men and women in heterosexual marriages.

Consider this: the average woman dedicates 4.6 hours per week to housework, while men contribute only 1.9 hours. Furthermore, women spend nearly 2 more hours on caregiving, including child-rearing than men.

Men and women are still having a hard time creating equal partnerships, and, more often than not, it means that women are the default parents of their children. They are also in charge of domestic duties and often have to make lists for their husbands and nag them to do their part.

Abby Eckel, a popular social media wife and mother, thinks this needs to end and uses her considerable platform to push to equalize domestic labor. In a video with over 900,000 views, she explains the harsh truth of why some men take advantage of their wives and refuse to change.

This is a harsh truth. But it needs to be said. He simply doesn’t care. 

@itsme_abbye

This is a harsh truth. But it needs to be said. He simply doesn’t care. It should not take conversation after conversation after conversation for your husband/boyfriend/partner to list, learn, and change. It’s because he doesn’t care. It doesn’t benefit him to change. Approaching your husband AGAIN to discuss household inequity is likely to fall on deaf ears because he has been EXPLOITING your time, energy and labor. And if he didn’t care when he started doing it, he sure as shit isn’t going to care now. And he likely knows there will be no consequence when he doesn’t. Because again, this probably isn’t the first time this conversation has been had. And nothing happened the last time you had, so why would it happen no? This is the very reason I tell women who are early in relationships, and those that are single – start out as you mean to go on. This requires setting boundaries for yourself and the person you’re in a relationship with. Be clear and upfront on what you expect out of it, what you will and won’t do. Because the second you start cleaning up his place, or your shared space, doing his laundry, looking after and caring for pets without setting firm expectations, you’ll soon find yourself being the sole owner and doer of those tasks. And trying to set boundaries after the fact – AFTER a man has benefited from you doing it, isn’t likely to happen. #marriage #datingadvice #relationshiptips #marriedlife

“This is going to sound harsh, but I think a lot of people actually just really need to hear the truth, and it’s because he doesn’t care. It doesn’t benefit him to change,” she says in the viral video.

“Approaching your husband again to discuss an issue, whether it’s household inequity, you not feeling considered, or you not feeling like he’s putting any time and effort into it, is likely going to fall on deaf ears because he’s been exploiting your time, your labor, your energy and if he didn’t care when he started doing it, he’s not going to care now,” Eckel continues.

Unfortunately, according to Eckel, if there are no consequences for refusing to be an equal partner, he won’t change. She equates it to parents who make threats to child children but don’t follow through.

“Eventually, things are going to go back to how they were. You’re going to stop nagging him and he’s going to be fine with it. Until you bring it up again. And then again, nothing happens because there’s no consequences. So why would he want to change?” she says.

Eckel believes the key to avoiding this trap is to set firm boundaries at the beginning of the relationship.

“Be clear and upfront on what you expect out of it, what you will and won’t do,” she continues. “Because the second you start cleaning up his place, or your shared space, doing his laundry, looking after and caring for pets without setting firm expectations, you’ll soon find yourself being the sole owner and doer of those tasks, and trying to set boundaries after the fact — after a man has benefited from you doing it, isn’t likely to happen.”

Obviously, not all men have problems doing their fair share of domestic labor in a family. Eckel made another video in which she shares the positive qualities that an equal partner brings to the table.

“I don’t have to make him a list.”

“I don’t have to ask him to help with things around the house.”

“He knows how to shop at the grocery store without pictures.”

“He doesn’t expect me to handle everything alone.”

“He plans date nights without me having to beg for it.”

“He does his own laundry.”

“He makes his own appointments.”

“My stocking has never been empty.”

“He makes his kids’ lunches in the morning.”

“He makes his son’s therapy appointments and takes his son to them.”

“He doesn’t believe that just because he goes to work, he shouldn’t have to do anything when he gets home.”

“He takes a genuine interest in me and my interests.”

“He knows how to fold towels.”

“He takes our kids to bed and knows our teachers’ names.”

“He doesn’t make me feel bad if I’m not in the mood.”

“He acknowledges and appreciates what I do and tells me often.”

“He does basic adult tasks without being asked.”

Source: Upworthy
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