Study: Couples that share household chores more likely to divorce

On behalf of The Marks Law Firm, L.L.C posted in Divorce on Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Want to start an argument over the water cooler? Cite a new study showing that couples who share household chores such as laundry, doing the dishes and taking out the trash are more likely to divorce.

That’s right: conventional wisdom is on its head again.

The study is of Norwegian adults (maybe their household chores are a lot more fun over there). Researchers found that divorce is actually more likely among the 25 percent of couples that shared household work equally than for the 71 percent of couples in which the woman did most or all the housework.

Divorce rates apparently soared among the four percent of couples in which the man did most or all of the housework.

Researchers say that their findings shouldn’t be used as an excuse by men or women to try to wriggle out of household chores, however.

“The main point is that there is little to indicate that gender equality at home protects against divorce, as many people think and as is typically maintained by scholars in the field,” one of the co-authors of the study wrote in a statement to an American media outlet.

He emphasized that the study didn’t find a causal effect between vacuuming and unhappy marriages. There’s no evidence, he wrote “that (equality) leads to divorce.”

So what does the study indicate? He said it might show that couples who have a more modern view of shared household responsibilities might well also hold a more modern perspective on marriage and divorce. Also, women in these more contemporary marriages might more be likely to have careers and financial independence enabling them to leave an unhappy union.

Our firm represents clients in matters of family law. For more information, please see our St. Louis divorce page.

Source: NBC, “Divorce rate higher for couples that share housework, study finds,” Sept. 30, 2012

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