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A survey featured in an article by The Huffington Post has all these things at the forefront of my mind. Essentially the article revealed what husbands can do to make their wives happy. According to a survey of married couples with children under the age of five, wives who “perceived” their husband as being active participants in family life, including the completing of tasks, had better relationships with their husbands. Moreover the quality of the marriage relationship improved when “wives felt that their husbands were close to their children.”

This particular study found that sharing an equal load when it came to chores didn’t necessarily matter. Instead it came down to “how satisfied people were with the division of labor.” And from what I know firsthand about satisfaction is that it isn’t a one size fits all emotion. Some of us are easily satisfied while others might require you to move mountains. My husband falls on the easily satisfied side of things for example, he is just happy I take the time to cook dinner. While it is nice if it actually tastes good he will still be satisfied simply because I cooked. I would like to think of myself as easily satisfied but in doing some self-reflection at the moment I imagine that sometimes my actions suggest otherwise. I’ve probably said this before as changing habits can be quite a process, but instead of whining that he made pork chops again I need to be grateful that he took the time to make them

As for the happiness thing – research supports the notion that sharing chores results in increased marital satisfaction. When you don’t feel like you are carrying the load by yourself and you aren’t consumed with task completion then there is more room for the good stuff. And I think that’s what it boils down to. So in my case, while my husband does look quite handsome vacuuming it isn’t his vacuuming that makes me happy or the fact that he cooked. It is the fact that through his willingness to share the load I have more time to do the things that I need to do and more time to do some of the things that I want to do. The things that I want to do tend to be things that make me happy, things like spending time with him and our daughters or eating chocolate lava cake from Trader Joes.

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