Chart of the Day: Are Married Men Lazy with Household Chores, and a Reason for Divorce?

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Although women comprise nearly half of the US workforce, they still fulfill a larger share of household responsibilities.

Married or partnered heterosexual couples in the U.S. continue to divide household chores along largely traditional lines, with the woman in the relationship shouldering primary responsibility for doing the laundry (58%), cleaning the house (51%), and preparing meals (51%). At the same time, men continue to take the lead in keeping the car in good condition (69%) and doing yardwork (59%). See this in the chart below and learn more here.

Roles of Men and Women in U.S. Households

Although women remain more likely than men to perform most of the duties at home, this has declined in some cases over the past two decades. Since 1996, women have become less likely to be the primary partner handling grocery shopping (down 14 percentage points), laundry (down 12 points), cooking (down 12 points), dishwashing (down 11 points), and cleaning (down nine points).

These shifts are accompanied by some combination of increases in the percentage of men primarily performing the tasks or sharing the work equally with their partners. See the trend data below.

Roles of Men and Women in U.S. Households 1996-2019

The above data seems to justify the often complaint that men are lazy regarding household chores in marriage. It is also a reason given when suggesting what problems occur in marriages – that we know are in severe decline. Below are a few citations of the main reasons for divorce and where “lack of household chore participation” is prioritized in terms of reasons for divorce.

  • Reasons Why Women Initiate Divorce More Than Men – household chores not mentioned.
  • 10 Surprising Reasons Women Turn To Divorce – household partially mentioned as number 9 of 10.
  • Penn State Study Reveals Common Reasons For Divorce – household chores not mentioned.
  • Reasons Why Women are More Likely to File for Divorce Than Men – household chores not mentioned.

The bottom line of these statistics is that, though men have not picked up the household chores to the degree many women would like in marriage, men don’t have to worry that their wives will divorce them for this reason.

Give us your take on household chores and whether you think it is a good reason for divorce in the comment section below.

See more Chart of the Day posts.

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