From The Confessional: It's Time To Divide Up The Labor Around Here—For Real

by Karen Johnson
Woman cleaning and dispensing a cleaning supply out of a spray bottle wearing yellow rubber gloves

Sorry June Cleaver / Donna Reed, but the 1950s black-and-white fantasy men have (or had) of coming home from work, putting their feet up, and being waited on by a cheery wife with a ribbon in her hair are long gone. It was bullshit back then, and it’s bullshit today if a household has multiple functioning, capable adults, and the labor is not divided fairly. In some houses, the parents alternate who cooks and who cleans up the kitchen. Or, one does the laundry while the other gets the kids from school. Or, this parent helps with homework while that parent washes the dishes. There are lots of ways to make a household run where no one feels taken for granted and everyone feels appreciated.

But having one person lie around while the other vacuums under their feet… that’s not happening. Women are taking back our power. We aren’t servants, and we aren’t going to spend our lives wiping up other people’s messes when the people making said messes are more than capable of doing it themselves.

Fuck. That. Noise.

So yeah, it’s 2021, and we divide up the labor now. Get on board, or GTFO.

H was raised by a (wonderful) SAHM and housekeepers. He does his own laundry, cooks for me on the bbq grill, NEVER expects me to cook, does the dishes and helps me with the baby. I'm a SHAM. I never realized how lucky I am until now.

Confessional #25858614

DH dug ditches (by hand) both days this weekend, took kids trick or treating both nights, cooked us dinner tonight when we got home, did dishes, and would be willing to fuck me now if I wanted. 45 yo and proof that not all men are lazy and useless.

Confessional #25858557

My dad would be 89 if he was still alive. No such thing as a feminist back the. Still, he was a real dad-cooked, cleaned, helped with homework, worked full time and did the yard work, etc. Nothing excuses men who aren't doing their job.

Confessional #25858300

My dad was on his own by the time he was 17. Both parents dead. He could out cook and out clean my mom and his ironing was dry cleaning level. When I hear of women putting up with so much, I think that they didn't have an example. Thanks, pops.

Confessional #25855183

Lots of men—from this and previous generations—already do this. They change diapers, wash dishes, cook dinner, do laundry… all tasks often considered “women’s work” in the past. Because they know there’s nothing sexier than a partner who fucking helps out and pulls their own weight.

H told me to cut the grass, told him ok. When he sat and turned the tv on I said oh no laundry needs done, dinner needs cooking, house needs cleaning. If I’m doing outside work, you are doing inside work. Guess who’s cutting the grass lol

Confessional #25858495

I am not opposed to cooking and taking care of a man who takes care of me. However, won't be joining the club of catering to a hubby, his kids and family while being treated like crap by them all. What I give is strictly based on what I get.

Confessional #25854803

You’d better be equally splitting housework, cooking, childcare, etc w/ your wife if you expect passion to be a two-way street. Most of us are stuck w/ men who pile on the work, don’t help, and STILL expect us to be the only one to keep the passion alive.

Confessional #25854931

This is the 7th man I've dated who is now hounding and asking and almost begging me to move in with him. NO!!! Learn to cook and clean for yourself! Over men!

Confessional #25856947

Some are slower to hop on this train, but don’t worry—we’re sending the message loud and clear. If they want us to cook dinner, they can mow the lawn. Or they get get their asses up and grill up some chicken. Everyone helps.

Days like today make me wish I had never gotten married. Sure go have fun with your friends, I’ll stay home with the kid, cook and clean and do laundry. Oh and I’ll go to work this week while you “look for a job, AKA sit on your ass and do nothing.”

Confessional #25857253

H complains he never gets time to get things done. Blamed me after I asked if we could go for a family drive around town. He sits and plays video games all day. I do chores inside and out, take care of our 2yo and cook. I feel like I'm being played.

Confessional #25857225

I am so freaking tired of dealing with fatigue and morning sickness and having to plan meals, shop, and cook for DH. But if I don't he will just blow $150 a week on take out and we can't afford it. Grow up and make a sandwich.

Confessional #25856925

Goddamnit, once again, H can’t be bothered to wait 15 minutes for takeout without having a beer, so since the bar was full he says fuck it, let’s just go home… where *I* now have to fucking cook!!! Grrrrrrr

Confessional #25856815

We are sick of doing it all, feeling invisible, and being taken for granted. We are not your mother. So stop acting like children and start acting like actual adults, mkay?

Husband is home pretending to be sick and pouting because he has to get his COVID shot or lose his job. He was still awake when I left for work at 6am & now I’m home, twelve hours later cooking dinner & he’s been asleep all day. I could fucking scream.

Confessional #25856804

I don't understand where mom's are finding the time to plan meals, grocery shop, put the food away, cook the food, and clean the kitchen every single day for eternity and have time for literally anything else. I'm dying.

Confessional #25858464

Every day is the damn same. Dishes, laundry, vacuuming, cooking, drop off/pick up, homework, football practice. I also work full time nights. I can't take it anymore!

Confessional #25854953

Moms everywhere are overwhelmed and need help. We can’t keep doing everything for everyone, nor should we. Especially when other people (ahem—that’s YOU, bruh) have working arms and working eyeballs.

So, sorry if you’re still pining for the life that 1950s TV dads had, but that ship has sailed. (And thank God for that.) Today’s homes have everyone pitching in—wherever needed. There aren’t “girls'” jobs anymore and “women’s work” is no longer a thing. Men can wash dishes and fold a damn towel—equality’s cool like that.

And if you’re stuck in a household and a relationship where the majority of the labor still falls on you, use your voice and wave your bullshit flag STAT. We aren’t helping anyone—not our kids, and not ourselves—by catering to their every whim. We need to raise children who see that everyone participates in ensuring that shit gets done, that household jobs are not gendered, and that Mom ain’t vacuuming under anyone’s feet. Ever again.