While today many television commercials for household products would have you believe that women are still the only ones picking up a broom or mop, new studies revealed that this is not the case. In fact, research from Mintel highlights reported that the percentage of men who clean the house is on the rise.
Decades ago, despite the colossal gains in politics, education and employment, women would still shoulder a greater share of housework because of the conventional perception that men are born breadwinners and women as nest builders. Household chore inequality was clearly evident because women were still cleaning, cooking and doing laundry despite having regular employment. According to sociological studies, in households where men were unemployed and stayed at home, working wives were still responsible for household chores.
Today, things have changed and gone is that perception of unfairness that used to hurt a lot of women. This new generation of men comes from an era when gender roles are less rigid and more flexible. The traditional assumption that men should rely on women for housework has been revised. Gender inequality in housework has been reduced and the world has been quite successful in bringing men into the cleaning process. For example, new research showed that the percentage of men who do housework has risen.
Yet, there is a gender imbalance when you compare the number of domestic works carried out by men and women. What is the real reason behind this imbalance? What can be done to encourage or motivate men to help more with housework?
The Real Reasons Men Don’t Do the Housework
He is the man who chose you as a life partner. He loves you very much. He works day and night for you and your kid. He comes home tired every day and yet he takes care of you. So, you refuse to let him help you with housework and do everything by yourself –even if it means ending up with blisters, headaches and taking sick leaves.
Only a handful of men help with household chores because most of the time, women either refuse to be helped or don’t ask their spouses to help them.
How can we expect men to help with housework when wives prefer having their one-woman show?
There is this new concept that claims that men and women have different perceptions of what’s clean and what’s dirty or messy. Women are always known for holding high standards of cleanliness and therefore, for them, a clean room would be a completely spotless space. On the other hand, men tend to judge less harshly and therefore, for them, living in a quite messy or cluttered space is acceptable.
Giving Men Incentives to Clean
Do It Weekly Instead of Daily
Let’s face it: cleaning the bathroom or fishing out your toddler’s toys from under the sofa every day can be pretty annoying and tiring. There are some cleaning tasks that would feel more like the torture of Sisyphus than housework if done on an everyday basis. This is why it is important to carry out certain tasks like scrubbing toilets, cleaning windows and dusting on a weekly basis.
Men are biologically “designed” to be competitive. It’s a fact that men love competing and a competition is a great way to help them approach cleaning tasks. If they think and consider cleaning to be a challenge, they will amaze themselves with how much cleaning they can actually get done.
Clean With a Beer in Hand
Beer plays a crucial role in all men’s lives. Although beer has a lower alcohol content than most alcoholic drinks, it is still enjoyed by many. So, if you are a regular drinker, you would love cleaning with a beer in hand.