Couples Who Share The Housework Are More Likely To Divorce, Study Finds


kitchenDivorce rates are far higher among “modern” couples who share the housework than in those where the woman does the lion’s share of the chores, a Norwegian study has found.

In what appears to be a slap in the face for gender equality, the report found the divorce rate among couples who shared housework equally was around 50 per cent higher than among those where the woman did most of the work.

“What we’ve seen is that sharing equal responsibility for work in the home doesn’t necessarily contribute to contentment,” said Thomas Hansen, co-author of the study entitled “Equality in the Home.”

The lack of correlation between equality at home and quality of life was surprising, the researcher said.

“One would think that break-ups would occur more often in families with less equality at home, but our statistics show the opposite,” he said.

The figures clearly show that “the more a man does in the home, the higher the divorce rate,” he went on.

The reasons, Mr Hansen said, lay only partially with the chores themselves.

“Maybe it’s sometimes seen as a good thing to have very clear roles with lots of clarity … where one person is not stepping on the other’s toes,” he suggested.

“There could be less quarrels, since you can easily get into squabbles if both have the same roles and one has the feeling that the other is not pulling his or her own weight.”

But the deeper reasons for the higher divorce rate, he suggested, came from the values of “modern” couples rather than the chores they shared.

“Modern couples are just that, both in the way they divide up the chores and in their perception of marriage” as being less sacred, Mr Hansen said. “In these modern couples, women also have a high level of education and a well-paid job, which makes them less dependent on their spouse financially.

They can manage much easier if they divorce,” he said. Norway has a long tradition of gender equality and childrearing is shared equally between mothers and fathers in 70 per cent of cases.

But when it comes to housework, women in Norway still account for most of it in seven out of 10 couples. The study¬†emphasized¬†women who did most of the chores did so of their own volition and were found to be as “happy” those in “modern” couples.

Dr Frank Furedi, Sociology professor at the University of Canterbury, said the study made sense as chore sharing took place more among couples from middle class professional backgrounds, where divorce rates are known to be high.

“These people are extremely sensitive to making sure everything is formal, laid out and contractual. That does make for a fairly fraught relationship,” he told the Daily Telegraph.

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  1. Our Torah HaKedosha is proven correct once again! Let men do men’s work and women do women’s work. We are not living in Eretz Mitzrayim where Paraoh forced men to do women’s work and women to do men’s work. Let the men work outside and the women in the house.

  2. This has got to be the dummest article I’ve seen in quite a while. This is clearly kineged hatorah, so why even publish this? You bring a proof from Norway

  3. The numbers are factual.
    The reasons given are guesses.

    Relying on guesses is quite risky.
    It would seem, one who would like a happy and stable marriage should do it the old fashioned way.
    Chag sameach to all

  4. Norway is Norway. This is the US. And…we are frum Jews. Look through the mussar works of the past 150 years. They all mandate that the husband help out, especially erev Shabbos. Are our women horses or slaves that they should a) make a parnassah so the husband can learn b) have a baby every 2-3 years and take full charge of child-care c) do all the household work and shopping???? Our “role expectations” as Yidden are completely different from those in secular society – no comparison possible.

    When I walk into my friends’ homes erev Shabbos and find the husbands (some of them working as klei kodesh) mopping the floors, I don’t worry about “role reversals.”

  5. can this be true? doesn’t it depend on a higher source? also how is it if the woman does most housework while the man toils away to make a living, make the choices, does the manly work, teach the children… she’s doing more-thats not equal? I think the next poll will show high divorce rates with the couple who equally waste time on the internet.

  6. To no. 3, Let me share with you a story that Rav Moishe Sherer ZTV’L told me: He was asked how do you stay so steadfast with reality, upon meeting kings, presidents, governors and other high profile CEO’s:::: you know what he said?????
    Every nite after dinner when my wife says “MOISHE TAKE OUT THE GARBAGE” I know I’m right at home: so take this norwegian mollarky, and you know what to do with it: All those HELIGA YIDDEN that came over from CHORBEN EUROPE, what we saw at home, they always helped. OCH UN VEI is to people who have that attitude, A GUTTEN MOED