[Today we welcome our first guest blogger, Sporcupine (Mrs. Gruntled).]
The more I think about it, the more I wonder if those housework studies assume that whatever the wife does is needed housework, and I wonder if that's fair.
If he's happy with a cleaning service vacuuming every other week and she insists on vacuuming every other day, is someone "right" in that debate?
If he'd alternate franks-and-beans with mac-and-cheese forever, backed with proper vegetables, and she wants to cook from scratch four times a week, what's fair? Does it matter how many cookbooks they each purchase and read?
If he'd serve company on plastic plates on the porch and she likes to get down the heirloom china, set the table with all the pieces, and later wash the china by hand to protect the gilded edge, what's the deal? We know she's elegant and he's practical, but what's an equitable split on washing up?
Home decorating is especially open to different expectations. What if she changes to different slipcovers for each season of the year, and he doesn't even notice the change? What if she carefully selects a different Longaberger basket to display in each room of the house, and he doesn't remember ever hearing the word "Longaberger"?
When the issue is adding grace, beauty, and style to a family's life, I can admire the spouse who wants to set a high standard, without saying the other spouse should do half the work to meet that goal. If the studies don't offer any distinction between necessities and niceties, I think that's a flaw.