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Boyfriends Do More Housework Than Husbands

Jeanna Bryner

LiveScience Staff

LiveScience.comWed Aug 29, 1:15 PM ET

Married men do less housework than live-in boyfriends, finds an international survey.

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But married women do more housework than their live-in counterparts.

“Marriage as an institution seems to have a traditionalizing effect on couples—even couples who see men and women as equal,” said co-researcher Shannon Davis, a sociologist at George Mason University in Virginia.

Understanding the dynamics of couples who live together but are not married has become more important as cohabitation around the globe increases. More than 5 million unmarried partner households (more than 10 million individuals) currently exist in the United States, according to a 2006 report by the U.S. Census Bureau.

"I do," just not housework

The scientists analyzed surveys gathered in 2002 from 28 nations, from 17,636 respondents (8,119 males and 9,517 females) as part of the Family and Changing Gender Roles III Survey. All respondents were either married or cohabiting with a significant other.

Overall, they found men spent about 9 hours a week on housework compared with women, who spent more than 20 hours weekly.

"There's still a gender norm, since women do more housework than men regardless of union type," said study team member Jennifer Gerteisen Marks, who is working on a doctorate degree at North Carolina State University.

Regardless of the couples' relative earnings or work hours, cohabiting males reported more household hours than did their married counterparts, while the opposite was true for women, with wives picking up the broom less often than live-in girlfriends.

Equal partners

Other factors also came into play. Men who raked in more earnings than their partners did fewer hours of housework than men with lower relative incomes. "Those in the household with greater resources will leverage those resources to bargain their way out of housework," the authors write in the September issue of the Journal of Family Issues.

Couples who viewed men and women as equals were more likely to divvy up chores equally. But even in "egalitarian households," married men still contributed less to household chores than did their wives.

"It's consistent with prior research, which has shown that the roles of wives and husbands are very powerful," Marks told LiveScience. "In a cohabiting relationship there aren't such strongly prescribed social norms, which trickle down to things like housewo

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If marriage is such a bad deal for women, how come it's always women trying to pressure a guy into marriage? Probably because this study is a load of bull, and marriage is usually a sweet deal for a female. Next time your gf or some married people try to pressure you into marriage, try bringing up these studies and saying you just don't want to oppress women and see how far it gets you.

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I got a Hypothesis to explain this.

The Boyfriend does it so he can get in the pants of his/her girlfriend. Once they are married, the Pants have already been infiltrated, thus the loss of reason to do these house chores

That's what I was thinking. Once you're married you have full security over sex and therefore don't have to kiss ass and do house chores the whole time.

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So basically this article is saying that when the woman in a relationship decides sex isn't all that important anymore (otherwise known as month 13 of a marriage) then guys think household chores aren't that important anymore. Interesting.

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Don't you think that scientists have something mayyyybeee just a little more important to figure out, rather than who does more housework boyfriends or husbands ?

Cancer research has been suspended indefinetely until this gets straightened out.

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But do you do it right?

she grabs my clothes and washes them sometimes cause mine tend to smell bad after the 4th or 10th time i wear them.

Its not something he has to do, which means any foldings good enough for me

matthew = 2 points

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Don't you think that scientists have something mayyyybeee just a little more important to figure out, rather than who does more housework boyfriends or husbands ?

This wasn't a scientific study, it was just a survey, and they probably only asked a bunch of women in a women's studies class. The article was also written by a woman. Can you say bias?

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