Sharing Housework Is Key to Happier Marriage, Study Reveals

April 24, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. household 
[HOUS-hohld, -ohld] (adj.) – related to living in a house or with a family
Example:  Our new neighbors purchased some household furniture yesterday.

2. fulfillment [foo l-FIL-muh nt] (n.) – a state or condition in which a person is satisfied with his or her achievements and success
Example: She finds fulfillment in taking care of her children.

3. manual [MAN-yoo-uh l] (adj.) – done with the use of hands or operated by a person instead of a computer or a machine
Example: He does manual jobs, like gardening and vegetable picking, on weekends and during school breaks to earn money.

4. highlight [HAHY-lahyt] (v.) – to emphasize in order to draw attention
Example: The study highlights the importance of cooperation in the family.

5. preparental [pree-puh-REN-tl] (adj.) – happening before parenthood
Example: The couple underwent preparental counseling to prepare themselves for their first baby.

Read the text below.

A new study conducted by researchers from the University of Missouri and Utah University shows that husbands who perform household chores and who are well-connected to their children are more likely to have a happy and satisfying marriage.

Published in the Journal of Family Issues, the study analyzed how 160 couples perform their housekeeping and parenting duties to identify the factors that add fulfillment both in marriage and parenthood.

By tradition, men usually carry out heavy manual tasks while women tend to involve themselves in cleaning responsibilities. However, the study suggests that couples should rather complete a single task together instead of doing different tasks individually. Doing so results to greater satisfaction in the division of labor, said Erin Holmes, a Brigham Young University professor.

In addition to willingness to help in household chores, the study also highlighted the importance of maintaining good relationship between fathers and their children. Fathers can have good connection with their children by giving enough time and attention when kids play games and do homework.

A previous research conducted by Holmes also found that couples with children aged five and below are most likely to experience challenges in doing household tasks. When the first baby arrives, responsibilities usually double among fathers, while mothers take on five times as much task as their preparental years.

Nonetheless, the results of the study emphasized that couples who do household chores together may be happier and more satisfied in the long run.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         How does your family divide household tasks?
·         Why is it important to have proper division of labor in a household?

Discussion B

·         How do you describe a happy marriage?
·         Aside from fair division of labor, how else can relationships between couples improve?


April 24, 2013