So I’m that guy that thinks it’s cool to do the dishes.
Disclaimer: This post may be a little controversial and get me into some trouble, but this is one of the most important things that I have learned in the last 12 years of marriage to my beautiful wife.
Early in our marriage I read a quote that hit home for me. More or less, it goes like this, “Happiness in marriage is not so much a matter of romance as it is an anxious concern for the comfort and well-being of one’s spouse.”
My wife and I have taken that quote to heart and made it a priority to focus on each other’s needs, rather than always thinking about our own needs. When each of us is focused on the other, our own needs our met and we see each other as equals partners. That doesn’t mean that we do the same things and that our roles are interchangeable. We each have strengths and weaknesses, but when we work together we make a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts.
Every marriage is different, but this is what our marriage looks like. I work and my wife stays home with our four children. She also works very flexible hours from home, but mainly she focuses on the children. I see her role as equal to mine, in fact most times I feel like my 8 hours at work is a vacation compared to the war zone at home. When I get home I help with the kids, help make dinner, help clean up dinner, and help to straighten up the house. We both have demands on us through the day so I try to share equally in the responsibilities that come at night. I change diapers, do bath time, put kids in pajamas, and help put them to bed. It is all in my job description.
We take turns waking up late at night to feed the babies. This is the hardest part because it is hard to remember whose turn it is at 3 a.m. when there is a baby screaming.
So some guys may be asking themselves, “What’s in it for me?” I am sure at some point you have heard the statement, “Foreplay begins in the kitchen.” I have found that to be true, need I say more?
The overall lesson I have learned is that I truly want my wife to be happy. My taking responsibility for some household duties makes her life easier. In return she is focused on my needs and it all comes together to make an awesome marriage. It may sound bizzarre, but I really like doing dishes.