Dividing up household chores for newlyweds isn’t particularly difficult as long as both parties agree that it should be done. Like everything else about getting married, this should be addressed before the wedding. Unfortunately, this is not one of the things that makes the priority list of things to get done before getting married. It is left up to chance until the load begins to look inequitable and one partner complains. When it gets to be an issue, some guidance can help reduce the pain and stress of equally dividing out the chores around the house.
Begin dividing up household chores by sitting down together and creating a list of every job in the house. Beside each chore, write the name of the person doing it now. This will usually produce a rather lopsided list. If the chores divide equally, it means that one partner is doing too many jobs that are unpleasant. Go through the list and rate jobs from 1 to 10 with 10 being an awful job and 1 being a desirable job. There won’t be many 1’s, but there should not be too many 10’s either.
Add up the numbers for each partner. This will tell you about how evenly the work is being divided on the pleasant scale and on the quantity scale. The numbers should be equal if all is right with the world. If one partner has a really low number and the other very high, you need some serious work. All is not lost. You just need to keep working to get things balanced out.
Now, go through the list without worrying about who is already doing the jobs. Each partner in turn can pick one job from the list until all jobs are taken. Now, add up the numbers again. They should be much closer unless one partner really likes doing the awful jobs. At this point, you can either stop or choose to trade with one another until both are satisfied that nothing more can be done to make it better.
Set a schedule for when each job needs to be done. Big jobs like laundry might need to be divided up into segments or number of loads. Trash needs to be taken out of the house everyday. It needs to go to the curb on trash days. You may find the need to negotiate a rotating schedule if neither party wants to do certain tasks.
Jobs that only need to be done occasionally may need to be put into a job jar and each party draws one out per week to do during the next week. Seasonal work can be handled together as a team. Once in a while, to strengthen the marriage, offer to do one of your partner’s less desirable chores on a one time basis.