Does housework make husbands happy?

The papers have been awash in feminist triumph over a study which is said to prove that men who do housework are happier:

There is only one problem.  The kind of study they did can’t prove what they are saying it proved.  Multiple regression analysis is only as strong as the theoretical underpinning of the study.  You can get all of the sampling and statistics just right and still get it all wrong if your theory isn’t right.  I haven’t seen any links to the actual study, but from the description in the Telegraph they compared men’s answers regarding how much housework they did with the same men’s answers on questions regarding their own happiness.  If you’ve even walked past a Statistics 101 course while the door was open you know that in this kind of study you can’t point the causal arrow.  It could just as likely be that when men are treated better by their wives they are happier and therefore more willing to do housework.  It could also be that both happiness and housework correlated with something else which wasn’t measured, like IQ/altruism.

These problems exist with the best of studies, when real scientists and grownups are overseeing them.  In this case we have results being released by a researcher who doesn’t even pretend to be unbiased.  Check out the incredible press release on the Cambridge site, titled Charting gender’s “incomplete revolution”:

A major investigation into gender equality across Europe expresses “deep concern” about the prospects for further closing the gender-pay gap, and finds evidence for the survival of “male breadwinner” ideals. At the same time, it also reveals that men are happier when doing their fair share of housework.

The study, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, was deliberately wide-ranging and complex. It covers attitudes and approaches towards gender equality over time, in different countries and at different levels – ranging from government policy to individual families. The researchers argue that this approach is important because we can only improve gender equality if we understand that it is the consequence of a network of multiple causes and effects.

Researchers expected to find, for example, that both men and women will be more satisfied with their household income if they have earned the money themselves. In fact, a series of interviews with couples on low or moderate incomes revealed that both tend to prize the man’s income more.

The authors suggest that this is really a modern version of the old idea that a man should eat well even when food for other family members is scarce, so that he has the strength to go out and earn a living. The authors reflect that: “The saying, ‘the more things change, the more things stay the same’, springs to mind.”

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146 Responses to Does housework make husbands happy?

  1. koevoet says:

    “It could just as likely be that when men are treated better by their wives they are happier and therefore more willing to do housework.”

    Please tell me you got a million dollar grant for this? Or at least an honorary Ph.D. in Sociology? Something? Because I’m sure a lot of money and accolades went in to that study and you just found the correct answer.

  2. RICanuck says:

    Appreciation, and admiration as a man, make men happy.
    No appreciation, no admiration, no male happiness. I’ll do the dishes without it, but that is beacause I refuse to wake up to a sink full of dirty dishes.

  3. Ulysses says:

    It could just as likely be that when men are treated better by their wives they are happier and therefore more willing to do housework. It could also be that both happiness and housework correlated with something else which wasn’t measured, like IQ/altruism.

    Bingo. I’m in a dual-income household with a few kids and another on the way. (For those unfamiliar with me, this is not an empowered/have it all decision but a “we like food and shelter” decision. ) There are only so many hours in the day. If I do dishes, clean up after the dogs, or cook dinner, which I enjoy in and of itself, then that leaves more time for other pursuits. As to laundry, I’ll wash and dry clothes, but I draw the line at folding them.

    These researchers are really straining to make reality conform to their ideology.

  4. slwerner says:

    RICanuck – “No appreciation, no admiration, no male happiness. I’ll do the dishes without it, but that is beacause I refuse to wake up to a sink full of dirty dishes.”


    As a man who does do a significant portion of the house work (plus all of the traditional male household chores) I can absolutely back RICanuck. I do it because it needs to be done – not for pleasure, not because I’m somehow happier for having done, and not even to make my wife happy – just simply that such things just need to get done. Same held true before I was married. I cleaned my place because that’s what needed to be done.

    I wasn’t happier for having done it, although perhaps satisfied by the outcome of having it be clean. And, it’s the same way I feel about mowing or shoveling snow. The only “happiness” I ever feel is that the job has been done.

  5. huate bourgeoisie says:

    Correlation vs causation is one of the first concept taught in statistics, which these “researchers” obviously never learned.

    Example: In the late 1940s, a nationwide study conducted over several years found a high correlation between the incidence rate of new cases of polio among children in a community, and per capita ice cream consumption in the community. (Equivalently, a simple regression model, using ice cream consumption to predict the rate of occurrence of new polio cases, had a high coefficient of determination.) Fortunately for those of us who like ice cream, a re-examination of the data showed that the high values of both variables occurred in communities where the study collected data in the summertime, and the low values of both occurred in communities where the data was collected during the winter. Polio – which we now know to be a communicable viral infection – spreads more easily when children gather in heterogeneous groups in relatively unsanitary conditions, i.e., it spreads more easily during summer vacation than when the children are in school. The high correlation in no way provided evidence that ice cream consumption causes or promotes polio epidemics.

    TL;DR – ice-cream do not cause polio, and house-work does not make husbands happier.

  6. HeligKo says:

    There is truth here. Its just the reasoning is wrong. Men like to have clear expectations to meet. I know plenty of men who are perfectly happy to do all the work at home. When they do it all they know they have met any expectation their wife might have about housework. Now the wives in my opinion are lazy and undeserving in most of these households, except for one thing. They give their husband respect and affection, so he is happy. Most men I know who try to do this don’t get the respect or affection, and thus are frustrated by the unrealistic expectations being placed on them. Marriage 2.0 does not equal partnership. It is a form of indentured servitude that men enter into. The ones that are happy with it, have accepted that and do what it takes to preserve the relationship knowing that it is inequitable by design. I know there were a a number of things that I did around the house for two reasons. 1) To stop her bitching about doing it 2) She only bitched about doing it, but never actually did it or did it well. If I did it, then it got done well.

    The problem isn’t whether men are happy doing something or not. Men generally have the ability over time to become content and even enjoy almost any situation once they have accepted the reality of it. The problem is that women are rarely content, and rarely are willing to accept the reality of their situation. They also always see inequities tipped in such a way that they are the one who are on the losing side, whether it is true or not.

  7. Feminist Hater says:

    Only in the mind of the delusional is someone ‘happier’ for having done the washing or cleaning of the house.

    They probably posed the question of whether the man was happy and then posed another question of whether that man did housework around the house. There is no correlation between being happy and doing ‘your fair share of the housework’.

    I would bet my ass it has far more to do with a man being respected and loved in his home and respected for the work he does and therefore being happy and more willing to help around the house when asked.

    Something also tells me that men are far happier when they perceive that they are useful and that they are needed. Whether it’s fighting on the battlefield, working in the trenches, farming livestock or even ‘cleaning the house’, men are just happier because they are needed.

    And TFH, I agree, most of these sorts of ‘studies’, if one can even call them that, start out with the conclusion firmly in place. Someone also needs to remind Katy Guest that nothing is ‘official’, especially not a brain dead study such as this.

  8. women are rarely content
    Yes, true, and this is true about housework big time. To a man, everyone I know except one suffers this, the wife is never content. if the normal stuff is done, laundry dishes cleaning etc…they have these never ending lists that you need reminded of, in the extreme I know some who have sections of the home being redone ALL the time, painting, florring, new furniture, new flowers…whatever, NEVER CONTENT, never sit and , as men do, look at a cut yard and draw satisfaction from it….impossible.
    The men happy to do housework may be happy because they have found they actually do less work, and in more agreeable settings, than when they shared or did none at all. Asking my sis in law once if she thought her husb had it harder than her, her tale of her day was amazing…she home schooled….so, get up, get kids brkfst, get them started on some school work, then “I sit on the couch with a cup of coffee and collect my thoughts”….that was about an hour. What does it even mean?
    Contrast w/ my other BIL who when he became house husband AND home school teacher of 7 kids, by noon daily, everything was done, DONE. Clean, orderly, kids finished with school work, stuff put away, contrasted when wife was doing it the place was utter and complete chaos. His “help” was trying, in limited time of evenings, to keep the place barely functioning by trying to fix all the stuff done during the day, the half finished tasks due to attention span and lack of focus, etc.

  9. needyhusband says:

    My wife does the inside and I do the outside. I help some on the inside but she never helps on the outside. And though we both work, I work more in my career. She still feels I do not help enough on the inside. They will do anything to get men to be kitchen bitches. The main problem with these studies is that they do not measure the women’s sexual attraction to the man. Measure that I would bet they are not sexually into the “help”.

  10. Kai says:

    This is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve seen in a long time. Has there been anyone ever who truly derives happiness from doing housework? It’s one thing for feminists to claim that men *should* do housework for whatever reason, but after feeling the need to liberate themselves from it, they really expect anyone to believe that what was apparently too low for women will actually make men happy?
    I know sociology is a semi-science from the start, but this really makes me weep for the state of science. Really, world?

  11. ybm says:

    Just another one of those “shit all over him, he enjoys cleaning up your messes.” things women are breeding into men each generation. The sad thing is that they are probably right.

    Men are a beaten down slave race of cuckolds, wimps, and capitan-save-a-hoes. And until they start to recognize that, society will heap greater and greater burdens upon them. And for 80% of men, the betas of the world, they will accept it willingly.

  12. Opus says:

    I have the distinct advantage – as a person who lives alone – of undertaking all the housework: all the cooking, all the washing, all the dusting, all the vacuuming and all the ironing; so does it make me happy? Well, let me put it this way: Were it left unattended to; I would live in a tip, with no food, dirty plates, dirty un-ironed clothes and generally in a mess. I would not like that. What I therefore need is a Maid. A bachelor friend of mine came to the same conclusion, and – to aid the economy and make a sensible division of labour – employed a middle-aged woman do undertake those basic chores at the market rate, and of course… it was not long before they found themselves between the sheets; so I prefer to do it all myself.

    …but it makes women happy. How frequently have I invited some new woman to my place, find it necessary, as one does, to pop-out for a few minutes, and on my return discover, that (unasked), she is cleaning, polishing, cooking, vacuuming and generally re-arranging. Imagine that I took it upon myself to treat her appartment in such a cavalier way! I deduce therefore that a woman who is interested in a man has an uncontrollable urge to act as an unpaid domestic: To lay down a marker of the sort, ‘This is my man and I may act thus’ – which seems the unspoken message; anyway: They are better at it; far better than I.

    ‘How are you,’ my Mother used to ask.
    ‘Fine’, I would reply.
    ‘Well, you look all right’, she added, but I could hear that unspoken sub-text – ‘If you can look that good living without a woman to care for you, then what is the purpose of my sex?’ If I were a female Cambridge equality-theorist, that, I think, is the question to which I should apply my mind.

  13. Rock Throwing Peasant says:

    When my marriage started, I did all the outside work and she did all the inside. We had two boys and she “couldn’t keep up with it all.” Ok, I can see that. So, I tell her that I’ll make sure the first floor is straightened up. The boys ran loose during the day and she was a part-time SAHM. I was irked, but I didn’t like living in a messy house.
    Years ago by, she’s back at work and she can’t “keep up with it all.” So, I took over doing the dishes. Not a big deal. When I remodeled the kitchen, I went top of the line and the dishwasher made things easy.
    Then, I heard gripes about the laundry. Now, I had been doing my own laundry from the beginning because she was the type that left things in the machines for days. I can’t wear wrinkled clothes or sour smelling clothes.
    I had all outside work, the first floor, dishes (and cooking half the nights).
    She had the two boys’ bedrooms and their laundry and she “couldn’t keep up with it all.”
    And you better bet that the spotless house was the pre-condition for sex.
    Now, I can’t help but chuckle. I rent a room with my friends and cut their grass once a month or so. The wife of the couple I live with works part time and keeps the house clean. The ex now has to do the outside and inside work by herself.
    You can find silver linings in terrible situations. This sorta brightened my day.

  14. HeligKo says:

    Funny to me how my STBEW manages to keep up with the cleaning alone, and couldn’t when we were together, and I was doing 3/4 of the inside and all the outside. Living on my own, I have less to do around my house, and my only complaint is its impossible to get the kids to do chores at my house, because she does it all at hers because she wants it to look perfect when her friends come over. Its all about image not work. Keeping a home nice isn’t that much work. She wanted the illusion of the overworked wife when we were together. Now she wants the illusion of the put together empowered woman, since we aren’t together.

  15. hurp says:

    I haven’t seen any links to the actual study,

    Ho ho ho. Let’s see if I can help with that. The Cambridge releases says “The findings are among dozens of results that have emerged from a five-year research project investigating equality between the sexes, and which are now being published in a book, Gendered Lives.” I looked up “Jacqueline Scott” (study’s author) and “Gendered Lives” and came across this:

    Gendered Lives: Gender Inequalities in Production and Reproduction

    While I’m not entirely certain, this does seem to be the book this study will be found in. Hmm…it also won’t be published until July 31 (later this month), so that’s another indication it may be the book these articles are referring to. I suppose our host (and/or anyone else who is interested) will have to wait until July 31st or later to see the actual study for himself, but you can use the “search inside” function to catch a sneak peek at the book. Though many pages are missing, when I searched for “housework” I found this on page 200:

    What is particularly interesting, however, is the way that Northern European men’s WFC (Work-Family Conflict) increases when the female partner is doing most of the unpaid chores. The perceived conflict may resolt from the dissonance of practice being at odds with normative gender equality beliefs [Hurp note: “Northern European” men refers to Scadanavia, where “gender equality” is everywhere, so the author is assuming men who leave household chores to women are feeling stressed out over “not being equal enough.” I may be misinterpreting them, though, have to read the other pages to be sure]. Or it may be that men’s heightened WFC reflects their partners’ dissatisfaction…perhaps one reason that men feel increased WFC when the housework is done mainly by women is that their partner complains. It is also plausible that some men want a more equitable role in the home and their well-being is reduced when the pressure of their job gets in the way. It certainly bodes well for more equitable gender role change in Northern Europe when men’s WFC is increased and their well-being is reduced when the housework is left mainly to women. [Hurp note: lol]

    While the first and third reasons will probably sound incorrect to you, at least from this page (the pages the actual study was on aren’t included, unfortunately) the second reason sounds like something most people here would agree with–Men are happier, or at least perceive less “Work-Family Conflict” when they do more housework because their women bitch at them less.

  16. ybm says:

    TFH says:
    July 5, 2012 at 3:44 pm

    Or you can learn confidence and indifference and keep that whole can of worms shut. I prefer this strategy tbh.

  17. This is clearly just advocacy research. Academics should be ashamed of this propaganda.

    There is masive begging of the question: why is “gender equality” in every area a goal? European women have (at least) parity with men legally. But feminists want to enforce attitudinal change as well. As usual, other women are frustrating their utopian plans.

    What really bothers the authors is that men and women don’t fully comply with the feminist script. “Male breadwinner” ideas persist. Well, so what? If that is how real people choose to order their lives, why is that a problem? Perhaps these academics could mind their own business, do less fruitless finger-wagging, and get real jobs.

  18. deti says:

    Housework does not make people “happy”. People do housework, or any other kind of work, because as slwerner said, that work needs to get done. Trash needs to be taken out, grass needs mowed, light bulbs need changing, laundry needs washed and dried, meals need cooked, kids need fed ….

    Someone’s gotta do that work. Sometimes it’s me. Most times it’s Mrs. deti. That it gets done does not make anyone “happy”. It just makes us glad that the task is out of the way so the next task can get done.

    There is this great need among these pointy-headed social scientists to see that women are “happy”. They need to “feel” and those feelings must be positive or something is very, very wrong. Whether married or single, working or not, career girl or SAHM, it is absolutely imperative that a woman be HAPPY.

    And it must be, simply MUST be, that if it makes the wife “happy”, then it must make the man “happy” too. Projection, that’s all.

  19. GhostShip says:

    If you’ve ever seen someone with depression then you know that one the outward signs is they stop taking care of themselves and their surroundings.

    These guys are not cleaning to make themselves happy. When people feel good they are more likely to take care of themselves and their surroundings.

  20. Dan says:

    “If you’ve ever seen someone with depression then you know that one the outward signs is they stop taking care of themselves and their surroundings. ”

    Right. If a guy is happy, he will work harder. If he is unhappy, he will retreat into his cave. The arrow of causation is backwards.

  21. Brendan says:

    women are rarely content
    Yes, true, and this is true about housework big time. To a man, everyone I know except one suffers this, the wife is never content. if the normal stuff is done, laundry dishes cleaning etc…they have these never ending lists that you need reminded of, in the extreme I know some who have sections of the home being redone ALL the time, painting, florring, new furniture, new flowers…whatever, NEVER CONTENT, never sit and , as men do, look at a cut yard and draw satisfaction from it….impossible.

    Indeed, this is the case for most women. Not all, because there are outliers among women as well, but the average situation is that women are simply much, much, much less content with whatever their situation is than men are. Smelling the roses is a challenge for a lot of women, I think.

    The impact of this on housework is clear: obviously it’s something that needs to be done, and if it isn’t done, or isn’t done well, there is discontent coming from the wife. About the situation as a whole, regardless of who is responsible for it. Feminist programming lies on top of that substratum, and adds to the discontent if she perceives that things are “inequitable” according to the photocopied feminist journal articles her professor made her read in FemStud 101 at college. So by appeasing that feminist sensibility, a man is trying to defeat one of the sources of discontent. However, because the underlying substratum is still there, he generally finds that once the household chores are done to satisfaction, the goalposts are simply moved, and there is another Honey Do List for the next highest level of Wife’s Hierarchy of Needs. It generally never ends, and this is because it is women’s nurturing nature to constantly want growth and nurturing and development — a steady state feels bad to a nurturing-oriented persona. That is all well and good when applied to children, but when applied to a husband it can go haywire fairly quickly, and lead to a situation where she is de facto in charge by setting all the goals and so on, and he satisfies her wishes, but she becomes unattracted to him as he becomes more and more of a kitchen bitch, competent in household tasks, but utterly dominated by his wife — which, again, for most women (outliers aside) is not what gets the engine going sexually. For all of the advocacy pieces about women being attracted to men who do chores, the reality that the sex therapists will tell you is that neither “talking about your feelings” nor “doing chores” turns women on sexually — it’s all advocacy studies and related bullshit (see the article in the NYT about female sexuality from a few years ago that destroyed a lot of myths about it, and resulted in a lot of angry comments from feminists).

  22. Opus says:

    I blame you Americans, and your Declaration which purports that you hold (interalia) this truth to be self-evident: that all men (which read mutatis mutandi women) are created equal. This all derives from John Locke’s Blank Slatism, (sorry about that) and is demonstrably nonsense – at least in the sense it is now taken.

    Humans are not well covered or particularily strong or fast or blessed with natural protection; their infants are born so premature that they must reach their first birthday before being of equivalent age with (say) a newly born lamb, and infancy and childhood is so consuming that it requires almost full time maternal care for a large number of years. The ability to gestate, lactate and bring up a child is a task instinctive to a woman, and requires little in the way of intellectual ability. By contrast men, as hunters needed considerable intelligence to first find then catch and kill some animal not wanting to be your next dinner. Nature being parsimonius thus made men naturally more intelligent than women, but this is what the equality theorist will not accept, not that she has any evidence to the contrary, and if she alleges that men are simply more cunning and aggressive, she merely undermines her equality argument. No matter the overwhelming evidence of the intellectual inferiority (on average) of women, she will not, will never, and can never accept that, for she holds her belief with all the tenacity of a religious believer – for indeed it is a religious belief. Few people have ever believed it and even today throughout most of the world few believe it, that is except in Academia in the West.

    Hence the above article where we now learn that men are happier being kitchen bitches – with the unspoken flip-side, that women are just as capable out in the business, academic and political world. If you buy into the first part you will buy into the second. Neither part is however believable.

  23. Yes, as Roger Devlin put it, women “complain at the margins”. This is why a major piece of advice I would give a young husband is, for God’s sake learn to say No, or the little lady will run you ragged. I sometimes find that my wife relaxes a bit once I tell her that No, some chore is not in fact essential right now.

    I do things like cleaning surfaces in the kitchen, vacuuming, child care. But there are also jobs I have never done and never will, like running the laundry or serving food. A man should never do what makes him feel emasculated. That will not make for marital happiness.

  24. Anonymous Reader says:

    I have another study that clearly needs to be done using the same methodology as this one.

    “Does wet pavement cause rain”?

    Where do I apply for grant money?

  25. Opus, have you been reading the late Australian philosopher David Stove on the intellectual inferiority of women? That sounds like his argument.

    It has become impolite to point out the average inferiority of women in the intellectual realm, but men and women would be happier if we could all stop pretending that women are as clever as men. I was rude to Melissa on this score a while back, but women really need to be reminded of the cold facts. Then they can concentrate on what they mostly do best.

  26. Bill says:

    I haven’t seen any links to the actual study, but from the description in the Telegraph they compared men’s answers regarding how much housework they did with the same men’s answers on questions regarding their own happiness.

    Depressed, unhappy people aren’t exactly known for being industrious. My bet is that the unhappy men simply don’t care enough to work around the house.

    In addition to doing more housework, happier men probably:

    Exercise more

    Take better care of their health

    Engage in more recreational activities

    Socialize more

    Drink less

    Kill themselves less frequently

    I’m sure the list goes on. The point is that this kind of study is worthless, and only goes to show that the people who interpreted the study really don’t give a damn about men’s happiness.

    Doing what women demand doesn’t make men any happier; happier men just happen to be more helpful and cooperative.

    They could just as easily have written that women who make their men happier have more helpful husbands, which is doubtless true. But we can’t ever, ever suggest that women should expend an ounce of effort making men’s lives pleasant — that would be heresy.

  27. an observer says:

    Wimmin struggle to be content, and most girls are brainwashed into careerism. Learning to cook, being able to sew are deemed tools of the oppressive patriarchy.

    After a comfortable days work in an air conditioned office, many women claim to be so tired they do nothing for anyone. But anything that men do at home is discounted.

    This is an extension of the disposable men meme. Since anything men do is discounted, whatever they do is not valued. But when a woman contributes, it is claimed as ‘the second shift.’

    Guess that hard days work in pr was pretty exhausting.

  28. ybm says:

    Well that stack of papers isn’t going to just appear at the xerox machine, the internet isn’t going to browse itself you know!

  29. imnobody says:

    I hate housework. But I would be extremely happy being a househusband and having my wife support me while I do the household chores while listening to the radio. This is better than the rat race. Any offers?

  30. an observer says:

    Hi David,

    Most women struggle accept they are intellectually inferior. Any accurate insights are perceived as a personal slight, regardless of whether it was aimed at them.

    I have basically given up debating with women. And most men. It is rarely worth the effort.

  31. lgrobins says:

    I am familiar with Stove’s work. Is there a particular book where women’s inferiority is discussed? Would be a good read.

  32. Laura, I shall give you my referene to the intellectual inferiority of women, and you can perhaps give me your reference (referred to on CL) to men and women preferring dom and sub roles, in general. Here is the essay by Stove on the intellectual inferiority of women:

    It also appears in his book of essays, which I have, entitled “Cricket versus Republicanism”.

    Another classic essay on the intellectual inferiority of women is that by Schopenhauer, On Women.

    Stove was famous for his philosophical arguments on induction. And his argument on the intellectual inferiority of women is simply that there is no evidence that women have ever, anywhere, shown intellectual eminence. A point that told with me was his remarks about the comparative intellectual productivity of groups of monks and nuns in the middle ages. Even when not encumbered by children, women still fail to produce intellectually. (Yes, there are exceptions, it need hardly be said).

    Do I believe that Stove was correct? In a broad sense, yes. I think women are capable of intellectual performance, but it tends to be within systems delineated by men, it tends to be fairly rote and competent, rather than brilliant, and some areas of intellectual performance seem to be almost impossible for women (and most men), such as theorising at the highest level, especially in science, philosophy and mathematics.

  33. Terse_man says:

    I always hear from the women how difficult and time consuming housework is, When I do it, I concentrate on it and it gets done in no time. It is a good question as to why they think it is so hard.

  34. ybm says:

    TFH says:
    July 5, 2012 at 6:48 pm

    If ‘game’ and its sycophants were content to leave it at confidence and indifference it wouldn’t be criticized. But then again, you can’t sell a product that’s only advice is “learn by doing”

  35. Terse_man says:

    One of the *cruelest* things one can do to a young woman is dupe her into overrating the caliber of husband she can get, and the duration of her window to get him. Interestingly, the perpetrators of this great cruelty, are feminists…

    When they are young, they are marinated in self-esteem. Then when they come of age, most have guys right where they want them. Never in their lives have they ever experienced any type of humbling experience. And they think, “I am awesome and because I am, this should go on forever”. It makes one have a bit of sympathy for them. OK, that second of sympathy is over.

  36. an observer says:

    Contemporary housework is easier and less time consuming than ever. Thanks to all the stuff that men invented.

    Just that women don’t want to do it.

  37. Terse_man says:

    ‘Studies’ like this also harm women.

    I think I will generalize this to “Any degree with studies in the name harms women”. They think they know everything, but know nothing. Can anyone think of a more dangerous person? To themselves, and everybody else.

  38. Twenty says:

    A few questions:

    Shouldn’t bachelors be happier than married men, then, since they get to do all the housework?

    If housework makes men happy, why do feminists have to bitch at them to do their “fair share”? In general, people do things that make them happy.

    Does housework make women happy? If so, why are feminists always complaining about it? If not, do the study’s authors admit of differences between men and women? What other differences might there be?

    Remind me again why I care about advancing “gender equality”? Women are legally advantaged in my society. If that’s not enough for them — too bad. It’s too much for me.

  39. an observer says:

    Terse man,

    Perhaps housework is an unwelcome proxy for realities like aging.

    Deny, deny, deny. . . Oops, what just happened?

    You turned 30, bitch. Get over yourself.

  40. ybm says:

    I think criticizing housework is a really poor place for men to plant their flag. I happen to love having a clean house, nice smelling clothes, home cooked meals, and pressed shirts. At the same time, women who complain about housework are probably the fucking laziest people on the planet and shouldn’t ever have children.

    Thankfully, according to the studies, the only dependents women who are doing the complaining about housework have is their cats and their ice cream.

  41. Terse_man says:

    Perhaps these academics could mind their own business, do less fruitless finger-wagging, and get real jobs.

    The “real jobs” part might be coming soon, at least for some of them. The higher education bubble will soon pop.

  42. Terse_man says:

    some areas of intellectual performance seem to be almost impossible for women (and most men), such as theorising at the highest level, especially in science, philosophy and mathematics.

    I have noticed this. I work in a STEM field, and all of the top performing workers are men. It comes from the wider distribution on the intelligence curve.

  43. lgrobins says:

    Thank you.
    “And his argument on the intellectual inferiority of women is simply that there is no evidence that women have ever, anywhere, shown intellectual eminence.”

    This is especially evident in what women choose to write about and their writing style. I am thinking of places like,, huffpost women, femail, etc. It is all fluff writing–celebrity, gossip, “why am I still single”, or some article lamenting about their life or men.

    I am trying to find that link for you. A few quick google seraches did not bring it up as quickly as I would like, but perhaps it should be disregarded anyway as I found it on one of the fluff sites above.

  44. Anonymous Reader says:

    I always hear from the women how difficult and time consuming housework is, When I do it, I concentrate on it and it gets done in no time. It is a good question as to why they think it is so hard.

    1. Because you are goal oriented rather than process oriented. Therefore there is a beginning, middle and end to the tasks, rather than a never ending process.
    2. Because there is a level of cleanliness and tidiness that is “good enough” to most men, but to many women there is no “good enough”, and therefore no stopping point.


  45. Terse_man says:

    My brother’s wife hates doing housework, so he keeps it all clean. Then she hates him for doing that. There is no winning in this case, but this type of situation does not seem at all out of the ordinary to women. It makes you wonder.

  46. gdgm+ says:

    As a single fellow living in his own place, the issue of “who does the most housework” has never made any sense to me. Should I argue with myself about dirty dishes in the sink? Am I oppressing myself if I only do 50% or less of the housework? It seems this theme is a proxy for *other* issues that women and feminist researchers want to address (i.e. complain about).

    Or there could be another issue: rather than “Betas shrugging”, the subject of a recent Dalrock post, it could instead be that (according to economics blogger Bryan Caplan) that being single is a luxury. Inquiring minds want to know!

  47. I think that for a lot of women, the first time they front up to an ironing board is like leaving the promises of girlhood behind. Rather like the first time a man puts on an uncomfortable collar to go off to his first real job. Illusions tend to get left behind.

  48. Terse_man says:

    women are rarely content

    Everybody has noticed that, but why is it true? In my mother’s day, women did seem to be content. What changed?


  49. Laura, I am glad you mentioned Femail. What a hoot that site is! It is written for ostensibly intelligent, albeit conservative, women and the whole site could be summed up in one phrase, “Look at her new bikini body!”

  50. Terse_man, I am old enough to remember women in the 1960s. They were happy then, it seemed to me, and right into the flower power period too. Then they got hardened and unhappy. You can see it in photographs. I date the collapse of women’s happiness to about 1970.

  51. Terse_man says:

    I date the collapse of women’s happiness to about 1970.

    But why? “Feminism” seems to be the answer. But I am sure it goes deeper. Any takers?

  52. I could be a bit fanciful and, like a good Catholic, blame it on the Pill. Whatever, women started to be told that being a woman was bad, femininity and fertility were bad, men including their husbands were bad, enjoying cooking was bad, et al.

    1960s women were content.

    BTW, the reason articles like those above get into the MSM is because the journalists are either feminists, or living with feminists. The only men who seriously get off on doing laundry (and like it better than sex with their wives) are male cuckold subs.

  53. imnobody says:

    I date the collapse of women’s happiness to about 1970.

    But why? “Feminism” seems to be the answer. But I am sure it goes deeper. Any takers?

    Yes, it goes deeper. Being from Europe, my country’s women are fairly feminist but not that unhappy. They seem reasonably content. I live in Latin America and Latin American women are happy, in general.

    I have thought a lot about this topic and I am convinced that the problem is not feminism per se but insane expectations. Women from Europe can be very feminist but they are also realistic: they know they can’t have it all (and not only in a feminist way but in general). They know that they must accept compromises and that life is not a fairy tale.

    No woman in Europe expects to get married to a wealthy hunk and live a fairy tale existence. Or, at least, no woman older than 15 y.o. No woman in Europe watches a rom-com and thinks that this is a documentary about her future life. Movies are silly fantasies and this is understood.

    After the seventies, in America, the attainable female fantasy of being a mother and a wife (watch, for example, “What a wonderful world”) was replaced by unattainable fantasies of marrying Prince Charming or having a glamorous career. American women bought these dreams. Being unhappiness the difference between reality and expectations, it is normal that unhappiness skyrocketed among American females.

    Why European women did not buy these fantasies? America has always been a country of dreamers, of idealists, a country of people who aim for the sky. This is its greatness and its weakness. The Puritans in Massachusetts inhabited a rich fantastic world: they were the New Jerusalem, they were the city on the hill, even when their existence was shitty: death, illness, hard work. This is the American DNA: to live in a world of fantasy. To have an ideal and to fight for it. A lot of people think that they are going to be rich. European people are more cynical and more realistic. And in Europe people don’t move so often, so extended families ground yourself in reality. In America, people move across the country and working hard, their only source of information are the mass media.

    Clotaire Rapaille (“The Culture Code”) say that the culture code for America is “dream” and the culture code for love in America is “high expectations”. The combination of both have made unhappy to American women.

  54. imnobody says:

    (watch, for example, “What a wonderful world”)

    I meant “It’s a wonderful life” Sorry for changing the title. And sorry for my bad English. I’m ill today

  55. Dain Bramage says:

    The question: Does housework make husbands happy?
    As one of those husbands, the answer is “Hell To The No!” Clean dishes do not make for a wet member. I’m not getting mad monkey sex because of a nice lawn, clean carpets, or watering her damn plants.
    Housework is another one of those hoops. Jump through the hoop in hope of a treat only to find another hoop. I’m supposed to believe that once everything is put in its place and all is tidy that having dishpan hands makes me sexy. Yeah. That is a steaming pile of bovine excrement. It’s the same limp message being preached from pulpits for beta male consumption. “Help around the house, after all, romance starts in the kitchen….” blah, blah,blah. Anybody out there has been jumped by their horny wife/girlfriend cleaning the bathroom? Does the smell of bleach get the tingles going??

  56. Dain Bramage says:

    Correction: Has anybody out there been jumped by their horny wife / girlfriend after cleaning the bathroom

  57. Phantasmagoria says:

    … This actually makes me remember my first ex. Not only did I have to make a 4 hour round trip every weekend to see her lest she go off her rocker at me, I usually ended up having to vacuum her house and wash her dishes before we could go out or stay in and have sex.

    So not quite being jumped, more having to leap through hoops, I guess.

  58. Nas says:


    Have you considered starting a blog? And are there any other sites where you comment frequently? I really enjoy reading your posts. As a young man in my 20s I have constantly felt being sold out by the older generation of men and mostly dislike their advice. I like what you (especially your outsider’s perspective) and Dalrock have to say though. I hope you consider starting your own blog.

  59. imnobody, that is very good. I try not to say this too often to Americans. But, yes, Americans always shoot for the moon (I believe they hit it once). They are a “no limits” people. But it creates a lot of “losers”. Australians are more realistic and cynical, and this may be why Australian women are a bit happier, it seems.

    Phanta, dear boy, I hope you have learned something from that experience. I do housework when and if it suits me, and I get the sex I want. Please Gentlemen, I hope there is no-one who seriously believes women get moist watching their men do housework. That is a fantasy of feminist journalists only. And I doubt they really believe it themselves.

    I must say I find watching my wife do housework turns me on a bit sometimes. Especially that time she vacuumed with her skirt off …

  60. Phantasmagoria says:

    Oh, I did. She was my first girlfriend and I was only 20 at the time, and having always been brought up to be respectful to women I didn’t know any better. Probably didn’t help that her mother was a bit of a crazy drunkard who yelled at the both of us and eventually drove my ex to a mental breakdown (which is the reason she cited for dumping me but whatever).

    It’s just funny to look back at it and realise how stupid I was.

  61. Paladin says:

    If I were married, I don’t know if that would make me happy, but I would gladly do at least half of the housework. The irony is that this very attribute is what would cause my wife to eventually be repulsed by me as if I were a rapist. So, no thanks.

  62. If you don’t want to do some kind of housework, here is what you do. Say No. When I retired recently, my wife asked me to put a load of laundry on one day. I told her I would not be doing that. I have heard no such requests since then. She continues to run the laundry. We are both quite content.

    No – a word all husbands should learn.

  63. ostensibly intelligent, albeit conservative

  64. Perhaps poorly expressed, Empath. What I meant was that the Daily Mail is written for conservatives, who might be expected to be a bit old-fashioned about sex and marriage. But the Femail readers are not the classy, elegant ladies one might expect. Instead they are vulgar and airheaded. It is all about boobs. A great example of women being shocking objectifiers of their own sex. Struth, they will even objectify themselves. I get my wife to do this for a laugh.

    I think my construction is actually OK as it stands, but just to clarify: I tend to the conservative side myself, and I certainly don’t think we are dumb.

  65. I thought so….construction is awkward, perhaps better if spoken….anyway thanks

  66. Should have said “awkward for me”….not a technical/mechanics comment

  67. Opus says:

    @David Collard

    I should have acknowledged my debt to your countryman Stove. With Stove I always have to re-read what he write three times because, (he) writing as well and wittily as he does, I fear that it is too easy to be swept away with the rhetoric. Having read, a few times now, his essay on The Intellectual Inferiority of Women I still cannot see the flaw in his argument. What he does not deal with, however, is the Physical Inferiority of Women, which is equally obvious but the Equality-Theorists act as if there is no difference there either. Even now in the final days of Wimbledon, and even though it is obvious that even the best woman player would be defeated in straight sets by the worst male player, the BBC will be treating the Men and the Women’s competitions as if they are of equal standard. Do not think however that I am an evil-penis Misogynist: I readily conceed that the women players are cuter and move with greater elegance and grace.

    Women just seem (like religious believers – of the worst sort) to have one bad argument after another to justify themselves. Take Novels: Why are there so few classic female novels? Answer – Men are oppressing women – and this not withstanding that 80% of novels are read by women. Women then cite Austen for quality (largely re-written by her male editor) Shelley’s Frankenstein (largely the work of Percy Bysshe at least in the vital central section) and The Bronte’s as victims who had to use male names to achieve publication – there is by the way from Richardson to James only one female plot – helpless girl who falls for brooding psycopath. That women are oppressed when it comes to publishing novels seems to be the conventional view, which even men tacitly subscribe to, even though it entirely fails to explain the popularity at the same time the Brontes were writing of novelists like Mrs Gaskill, or the popularity earlier of Ann Radcliffe and Austen. Fortunately it is nonsense. The majority – or approaching the majority – of fiction, at all times since the invention of the novel – circa 1700 – has been written by women and I rely, on Italian Literary Critic, Franco Moretti for that. The trouble is, that time weeds out the trash and leaves largely the better written, male penned novels – Defoe, Swift, Richardson, Sterne etc. The women then move the goal posts again and insist that the only reason those novels are read is because male academics foist them on their students. Look they say, even J.K. Rowling and E.L. James had to hide their sex to become published – the word woman and the word excuse should be synonyms. So it goes on, but as Stove says it is somehow considered impolite to draw attention to what everyone knows, namely that women are (generally) not as bright as men. That equality-theorists like the one above then have to humiliate men with the Mr Mom notion that somehow men are happier cleaning dishes struck me as merely a way of failing to say what she really had in mind, namely that mutatis mutandi women are equally happy and competent being CEOs – as it happens they aren’t, but again it is considered somehow impolite to mention it. The fiction seems to be that all women are capable of and suited to being CEOs and Presidents and will be, just as soon as men stop oppressing women. A Utopia for women will then emerge. This idea is, apart from being daft, very cruel to women – who tend to be over-pedestalled in relation to their looks anyway – so that being pedestalised where they are not likely to be better superior does them no favours and will surely only lead, as we see, to bitterness and anger. It was this that put me in mind of Stove. If he is right, as I think he is, then that rather undercuts the idea that men have somehow been unfair to themselves all these millenia by failing to do what they really want – namely act as a Kitchen Bitch.

  68. Just quickly before I forget, again. Jenny Teichman addressed Stove’s argument. But as I recall her argument is surprisingly crap. She is a philosopher herself, and should have done better.

    Most men won’t tell the ladies the sad truth. Stove had balls doing that.

  69. Stove also wrote a stupid attack on Darwinism. The bloke was not perfect. I did like most of the essays in Cricket versus Republicanism though.

  70. Austen was mocking lady novelists in Northanger Abbey. As you say, there were plenty of women publishing.

    Women can write well. They are not in the absolute front rank, but I would miss Muriel Spark, Nancy Mitford, Jane Austen, and so on.

    Women make good administrators and civil servants.

    Some women make good biologists.

    Where they are not strong is in the more exact sciences, theology, philosophy, and so on. Oddly, some of my favourite artists are women, though they are not prominent. Women seem not to write great music, although they write nice ballads and are wonderful performers. They are very good at stripping (sorry, naughty).

    Aquinas believed that women were inferior in body and mind to men. And that this reflected the glory of God’s disparate creation.

  71. Looking Glass says:

    On the American “dreaming” point.

    Tracking the issue back to the 1970s is a good idea. We like “shooting for the moon”, but it used to be a tad more circumspect. These days, though, there’s an entire industry built around providing self-esteem to children. It’s practically ruined the entire field of education here in the States. That’s mostly what you’re seeing.

    Further, even guys here in the States will generally have a solid appreciation for their limits. The issue is a bit more on the female side of things and, in most ways, driven by the status-consciousness of the NY-LA media axis.

    But the “dreamer” bits isn’t all bad. For a highly competent person, it’s a useful basis from which to proceed through things. For the incompetent person or ones that don’t understand limits, it’s very dangerous. I think you can see where that goes, haha.

  72. Rod says:

    I’m late to this discussion, but I’d like to add that it’s not really correcto to speak of husbands’ “happiness.” I would suggest rather that “happiness” as it’s generally understood in contemporary discourse (and not, for example, in the Declaration of Independence, where it has a very different meaning) primarily concerns women. Men might think in terms of personal satisfaction, but they rarely frame things in terms of “happiness.” When a man marries, everyone tells him to “make her happy.” No one tells her to “make him happy.” So I am immediately suspicious of a study that frames things in terms of male “happiness.”

    I’d also argue that since women more often set the emotional tone of a household than men do, he’s “happy” if she is. We’ve all heard the saying “If momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” The corrolary is “If poppa ain’t happy, ain’t nobody cares.” I know that’s true in the family I grew up in, and that it’s true in my own family. On my way home every day, I find myself wondering what mood my wife will be in, because that will end up being my mood too. If I realize that performing some household chore will turn her mood toward “happy,” then I’m only too willing to perform it. Then I suppose I’m “happy” too, but only because she is. In its current definition, men don’t think in terms of “happiness” apart from women. (Sorry to use so many scare quotes, but it’s difficult for me to take that word seriously.)

  73. I have a saying too. “If Momma ain’t happy, tough shit.”

  74. David
    Please link the Darwinism essay…Id like to see if it is objectively stupid

  75. Opus
    Yes on all points.
    There must be some (duh) affirmative action occurring in the publishing of pulp fiction these days as, when you walk past the bestseller section in any venue of new books, the dominant gender of the authors is female. Crime with CSI focus and gothic netherworld monster seduction abound, and have crowded out male writers.
    Obviously nothing of lasting import will come from this….but… it coincidence?

  76. imnobody says:


    Thank you, Nas. I really appreciate your words. It’s good to know that you like my thoughts.

    I wrote a lot in Hooking Up Smart before the blog became another branch of the female supremacism movement. I also wrote a lot in The Spearhead. Nowadays I only write at Dalrock’s.

    The reason why I don’t start a blog is because I don’t have time. I have a very demanding job. I comment here when I want to relax a bit. This is why my posts have become rarer and rarer.

    But I’m considering starting a blog during 2013, because my workload will diminish then. If I do it, I will announce it here.

  77. Clarence says:

    Housework can make some husbands happy:

    Or at least so he claims.

  78. Clarence says:

    Oh, “trigger warning” for any who click that link and read through that article. 😉

  79. Opus says:

    @David Collard

    I, doubtless, could spend all day – and you all night – discussing female artistic achievment. It might be thought (given my disparaging comments) that I have not a good word to say for female artistic activity, but that is not the case. I know little of art but although, as you say, women are not in first rank of Composers I very much like the music presently being written by Unsuk Ch’in and Rebecca Saunders indeed (elsewhere on line) I have found it necessary to make apology for Saunders as most people do not get her at all. Indeed the fact that I like Ch’in and Saunders almost makes me suspect the fault is in my taste. What is certainly the case is that politically correct attempts to resurrect the music of Fanny Mendelsohn, Clara Schumann, and Ethyl Smyth merely reveal its run-of-the-mill ordinariness. As with the novelists you get the same excuses, but as Stove says, we deduce that women are intellectually inferior to men because their intellectual peformances are less good, and that is certainly equally true of female composers: their compositions are more ordinary. All the usual excuses are of course trotted out. Who knows, maybe men have always deliberately, and with malicious, glee prevented women from musical success – as if men get some sort of pleasure from such sadistic activity, yet the facts are different and even an old curmogeon like Luigi Cherubini (Berlioz’ teacher) introduced female students to the Paris Conservatoire – yet with no effect on great French music, merely garnering Berlioz with a sexual-harrassment complaint for entering by the woman’s door! The problem is that as men so effortlessly seem to want to promote and pedestalise women generally it would then be rather curious that they should have done the opposite with aspiring female composers. Even if they were being overlooked by their contemporaries, given the number of women in the Nineteenth Century and beyond who were SAHMs there would have been no difficulty about women whiling away their days composing to their hearts content – all you need is paper, a pencil and an eraser, yet I do not believe I can name one single female Symphonist! But even if I were wrong surely no one can suggest that post WW2 women composers have been oppressed, yet all the great names from the second half of the twentieth century are men, but then at that time they had not dreamt up Affirmative Action.

    As you mention stripping, I am reminded of last night. You may be familiar with the (screen) play for ‘Calender Girls’ in which a group of middle-aged women tastefully strip-off for charity. A Tweet from our local Theatre described the women in the play (based I believe on a true story) as ‘Courageous’. There are plenty of adjectives that come to my mind to describe middle-aged women stripping: Ill-advised, Indecent and Embarrasing are amongst them but certainly not Courageous. The word Courage brings to mind heroic self-sacrifice as with Firemen and Soldiers so the idea that there is anything heroic about taking off ones clothes is, for me, absurd, but that I am afraid is yet another example of female pedestalisation and rather undermines those women who insist that they are CEO material. Part of the problem with Feminism, is its inconsistency as to whether women are natural ball-busters or sluts – I think women should make up their minds – or would that be oppresive?

    I frequently find working with women a nightmare, and they too often seem to see everything through their Vagina – not all of them – but far too often. The idea that men spend all day at work thinking about sex is, I observe, mere projection. Unlike women, men don’t tend to burst into tears when spoken to in a matter-of-fact sort of way, which shows me the special treatment women instinctively expect.

  80. Yes. Feminists also cannot make up their minds if women were prevented in the past from, say, writing great music. Or they did, but we are yet to appreciate it.

    As you say, Stove’s argument is that women have been given chances, and have still not succeeded. I actually had a woman, Elle she called herself, say on Heartiste that women will start doing great intellectual work soon. As I reminded her, we have been hearing this for a century now.

    As for resources, I recently came up with an idea in biology which has now been tweeted by a prominent science journalist, cited on relevant blogs, appears on Wikipedia and has been cited in the Journal of Molecular Evolution. I came up with this idea in the bedroom I am currently in, and my only resources were sheets of paper and a pen.

    In fields like natural history, mathematics, observational astronomy, scientific theorising, and music, a practitioner may need practically negligible equipment and institutional support.

    I think Empath asked about Stove contra Darwin. I don’t know of an electronic version of that paper. It is found in his collection of essays Cricket Versus Republicanism.

  81. Dalrock says:


    Oh, “trigger warning” for any who click that link and read through that article. 😉

    Trigger warning: the feminist catchphrase which proves the lie of feminism. Who else but women would come up with and regularly use a term that means “reading this will give you an unhappy face”.

  82. The Antigrrrl says:

    “I hate housework. But I would be extremely happy being a househusband and having my wife support me while I do the household chores while listening to the radio. This is better than the rat race. Any offers?”

    My husband is in this position…he complained non stop about how awful his job was and how it was killing him, now he complains non stop about how the kids are killing him. He is proof in action that humans in general are never content.

  83. slwerner says:

    @Married men in the USA:

    Gentlemen, our president has spoken:

    Obama on marriage: ‘Do whatever she tells you’

    So, I guess that’s the final word then?

  84. Heck, no! My man will do it only if he sees a clear path to tangible gain w.r.t. my level of respect and/or gratitude for him. Gratitude and respect from me make him happy, not housework.

  85. koevoet says:

    slwerner, the Obafuhrer…I mean Obamessiah has spoken! To doubt him is to doubt THE ONE. Surely you mean what you said as to glorify the GREAT ONE, not sarcastically to slander HE who shall set us free?

  86. Anonymous Reader says:

    I’d also argue that since women more often set the emotional tone of a household than men do, he’s “happy” if she is. We’ve all heard the saying “If momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” The corrolary is “If poppa ain’t happy, ain’t nobody cares.” I know that’s true in the family I grew up in, and that it’s true in my own family. On my way home every day, I find myself wondering what mood my wife will be in, because that will end up being my mood too. If I realize that performing some household chore will turn her mood toward “happy,” then I’m only too willing to perform it. Then I suppose I’m “happy” too, but only because she is. In its current definition, men don’t think in terms of “happiness” apart from women.

    You are not the only man to go through this, not by a long shot. But what it means is chasing ever-moving goal posts. You need to learn some Game and strengthen your frame. Seriously.
    At the very least, “if poppa ain’t happy, stay out of his way” is a better frame, and can have useful effects. Because you are betaizing yourself, and the hurdles/ hoops required to make her ‘happy” for a moment are surely going to become bigger and/or higher.

    I suggest reading through Athol’s “Married Man Sex Life” blog, Dalrock has a link to it on the sidebar.

  87. Kyo says:

    From the Cambridge summary:

    it also reveals that men are happier when doing their fair share of housework

    “Fair”? Who defines what is “fair”? Did you think you could sneak that presupposition in and we wouldn’t notice?

  88. Anonymous Reader says:

    slwerner – that’s the final word for Barry. His wife clearly has a few pounds, and possibly reach, on him plus better shoulder muscle development. So she could pound on him pretty good, and as skinny as he is he probably doesn’t have a lot of endurance or fast feet. Heck, if she grabbed him by the ear, it would be game over.

    “The Personal Is Political”, in other words…

  89. Opus says:

    @David Collard

    Well, that girl at Chateau Heartiste may be right and it may be that not too long in the future women will indeed be creating great Art, doing great Science and for that matter playing Tennis to a higher standard than men, but as David Stove observed, he too could equally assert that at some future time he might be a better batsman than Viv Richards. No one would however believe that. Other than blaming men – a highly implausible and unsubstantiated theory – no explanation is given by women as to their woeful failure in Arts and Sciences, or why things will soon change. It just seems highly unlikely that given female pre-occupations over the last million years, that nature should have gifted women with higher intelligence than needed to gather and to mother and for no obvious purpose. As Stove says, nature is parsimonious with as Just-so approach to need. One might as well assert that before long men are going to be natural mothers, but no one not even Feminists say that. Consider the game of Chess: Women have always played it; yet even now, of the top 100 players of that game only one is a female. I recall listening to a radio programme about the game, with two male chess experts being asked to explain this curious anomally, and as Stove observes about people talking of female intelligence, the men became embarrased to admit the blindingly obvious and did so only grudgingly – so much for oppression.

    It seems to me (and here I must admit some debt to Henry Laasanen) that women, unlike men, are gifted in three areas, namely looks, work and mothering. Men, generally, are only good at work, and not blessed with looks or maternal instincts, so it is hardly surprising that work is what they excell in. As Moxon says: for a man, a life without the possibility of full-time work is simply not on his radar. Men do not have it all, and the Newtons and Beethovens of this world are single men without issue. This three part split in women is I think responsible for the incoherence of feminist views. Are they Mums (heroically not needing men), workers (just as good as men – provided they are treated as special cup-cakes with affirmative action), or, to be admired for and use their beauty ( which veers between slutting and prostitution at one end, and marrying Prince Rainier of Monaco at the other)? Not one of these seems to satisfy them on its own – a bit like stone-paper-scissors. Penis-envy is rampant, yet they will insist that mothering should be theirs by divine right.

    I have a copy of some of Stove’s essays on Darwinism, but I am sure you will agree that he is not anti-Darwin in the sense that a Christian Fundamentalist would be; he merely takes issue with certain ideas and assertions, but as you are a Biologist and I am not, I do no propose even considering taking that further, for as I said earlier, Stove’s veiws are so seductive one has to be very careful.

  90. Kyo, indeed. Not very objective, these “researchers”.

  91. In the phrase Ann Coulter used, Obama is just another male politician who has been “fitted for his tutu.”

  92. ybm says:

    “The Vain Yogi says:
    July 6, 2012 at 10:53 am

    Heck, no! My man will do it only if he sees a clear path to tangible gain w.r.t. my level of respect and/or gratitude for him. Gratitude and respect from me make him happy, not housework.”

    Have you considered why? I haven’t seen you comment here before so I’m not sure of your motivations, but do you feel this is how your husband should live his life: Defined by the satisfaction of his master?

  93. Ybm, Vain Yogi has been around. She is saying she respects her man. Please don’t lets scare off another girl.

    Opus, here is a suggestion I made on women’s intelligence:

    No, Stove does not object to Darwin on religious grounds. Stove was an atheist. His arguments are just not good arguments in this instance.

    As for penis envy, which I have said before is the only thing Freud got right: I never used to believe in this, but the reaction of women, even in public, when a man is castrated by an insane woman certainly suggests that many women do suffer from penis envy.

  94. ybm says:

    Shove it up your ass David Collard I will ask whoever and whatever I want. If you are too scared or unwilling to ask people to look deeper into their motivations on things then just stay the hell out of my way and don’t reply to me.

  95. deti says:


    And now, a reading from the word of Roissy (peace be upon him), the book of the Sixteen Commandments, Chapters III, IV and XV. (*Thanks be to Roissy*).

    Chapter III. You shall make your mission, not your woman, your priority

    Forget all those romantic cliches of the leading man proclaiming his undying love for the woman who completes him. Despite whatever protestations to the contrary, women do not want to be “The One” or the center of a man’s existence. They in fact want to subordinate themselves to a worthy man’s life purpose, to help him achieve that purpose with their feminine support, and to follow the path he lays out. You must respect a woman’s integrity and not lie to her that she is “your everything”. She is not your everything, and if she is, she will soon not be anymore.

    Chapter IV. Don’t play by her rules

    If you allow a woman to make the rules she will resent you with a seething contempt even a rapist cannot inspire. The strongest woman and the most strident feminist wants to be led by, and to submit to, a more powerful man. Polarity is the core of a healthy loving relationship. She does not want the prerogative to walk all over you with her capricious demands and mercurial moods. Her emotions are a hurricane, her soul a saboteur. Think of yourself as a bulwark against her tempest. When she grasps for a pillar to steady herself against the whipping winds or yearns for an authority figure to foil her worst instincts, it is you who has to be there… strong, solid, unshakeable and immovable.

    Chapter XV. Maintain your state control

    You are an oak tree. You will not be manipulated by crying, yelling, lying, head games, sexual withdrawal, jealousy ploys, pity plays, shit tests, hot/cold/hot/cold, disappearing acts, or guilt trips. She will rain and thunder all around you and you will shelter her until her storm passes. She will not drag you into her chaos or uproot you. When you have mastery over yourself, you will have mastery over her.

    Blessed be the shameless copying and the reading of the word. (*Thanks be to Roissy*) In nomine Roissy, et Dalrock, et Spiritu Yohami. Amen.

    Rod, be you not only a hearer, but also a doer of the word.

  96. Cane Caldo says:


    I think that for a lot of women, the first time they front up to an ironing board is like leaving the promises of girlhood behind. Rather like the first time a man puts on an uncomfortable collar to go off to his first real job. Illusions tend to get left behind.

    And they could use a good deal more of it! Boys, too. This is the problem with adolescence, and extended childhood, generally. Eight-year old girls do not think they are leaving the promises behind when they have to iron. At worst, they just don’t want to do their chores. At best they are excited to be like a “grown-up”.

    There is far too much leisure in childhood.

  97. alpha Mac says:

    Ha ha!
    That post from The Telegraph used that same pictures a year and a half ago for totally different study that said housework is bad for your heart!

  98. Uncle Elmer says:

    I have done my own research, and it conflicts with the findings in this “study”.

    My wife enjoys cooking and housework. I help with the dishes.

    Those researchers should read about her here :

    A Man Wants a Wife, Not a Co-worker

    ForeignBride Product Review : Finding a Model That’s Right for You

  99. “I think women are capable of intellectual performance, but it tends to be within systems delineated by men, it tends to be fairly rote and competent, rather than brilliant, and some areas of intellectual performance seem to be almost impossible for women (and most men), such as theorising at the highest level, especially in science, philosophy and mathematics.”

    A woman’s opinion:

    “Herbert Spencer – the man who first popularized the scientific theory of evolution – explained the physical handicap sex imposes upon woman on the theory that “there is a positive antagonism between the higher evolutionary tendency and reproduction;” and that “the more extensive organic expenditure demanded of the female by the reproductive functions, limits the feminine development to a notably greater extent than the masculine.” This “Spencer’s Biological Law,” as it was called, had the indorsement of such authorities as Darwin, Huxley, Lombroso, Milne Edwards, Iwan Bloch, Havelock Ellis, Oskar Schultze, and a score of others who might be named. They all concur in the idea that the unquestionably existing physical differences between the sexes correspond equally without question to existing psychical differences, using the word “psychical” in its relation to the whole spiritual being – mind, will, and feeling. “To suppose,” says Herbert Spencer, “that along with the unlikenesses between their parental activities, there do not go unlikenesses of mental faculties, is to suppose that here alone in all nature there is no adjustment of special powers to special functions.”

    The history of human society from its beginning abundantly confirms the scientific theory on this head. Everywhere in the domain of creative thought – in science, art, literature, invention, and religion even – it is man who has led, and woman, where she has entered these fields at all, has been for the most part a feeble imitator. There are no female counterparts for such names as Bach, Handel, Chopin, Verdi; Phidias, Da Vinci, Rubens, Turner, Millet; Homer, Shakespeare, Dante, Goethe, Milton, Burns; Aristotle, Roger Bacon, Newton, Darwin, Spencer; Socrates, Plato, Francis Bacon, Locke, Berkeley, Kant, Edison; Confucius, Buddha, Mahomet, Swedenborg; and it is idle to contend that this is due to accident or custom. The explanation lies in the bedrock of sex differentiation.”

    ANNIE RILEY HALE: “Biological and Sociological Aspects of the Woman Question,” Government Printing Office. Washington, 1917.

  100. van Rooinek says:

    OT but all Dalrockistanis should see this….

  101. pedrogarciaburgales, thanks. Interesting quote.

    Even liberals and progressives probably accepted women’s intellectual limitations until recently. Amram Scheinfeld, a liberal writer, writing in his Heredity and You in the 1960s concluded that women were inferior to men intellectually.

    The intellectual production of modern feminists tends to support the traditional view.

  102. GKChesterton says:

    Possible? That’s the most likely hit on a search on Google Scholar I just did. Its
    1.) European (Polish)
    2.) 2012
    3.) And deals with happiness

    Interestingly the abstract says something different than the article. I might suggest that the paper really says:
    “Where a couple has both members working men who also contribute to housework are happier.”

    I’d say this makes sense. I’d also be interested in _WHAT TYPE_ of chores. Men traditionally do many chores that both make us happy and are considered attractive to women. Say, chopping wood, mowing the lawn, killing the pigs in the back. My guess is they aren’t really careful in differentiating these tasks. I have _not_ read the above comment stream…will get to that shortly and I apologize if this is a repeat.

  103. @ ybm
    ‘Have you considered why? I haven’t seen you comment here before so I’m not sure of your motivations, but do you feel this is how your husband should live his life: Defined by the satisfaction of his master?’
    Gratitude and respect from me make my husband happy because it leaves him free to get on with his business which defines his life. He has guides but he is his own master. No, I am not his master. I promised to obey him not command him.

  104. @ David Collard
    ‘Ybm, Vain Yogi has been around. She is saying she respects her man. Please don’t lets scare off another girl.’
    Thank you for your support. I see how my comments were misconstrued to mean that my husband lives for my gratitude and respect. He does not. My gratitude and respect adds to his plate of happiness that has other things on it besides my contributions.

  105. Mr. Collard,

    I have found your book:

    “11. Are women mentally inferior to men?
    No! — at least, according to IQ scores. Undoubtedly women think in different ways than do men about many problems. This may or may not be due largely, if not entirely, to differences in the way the sexes are reared and conditioned. But regarding “quantitative,” or measurable differences in the mentality of the two sexes, Professor Lewis M. Terman, one of the highest
    authorities in the field, has this to say: “Intelligence tests . . . have demonstrated for all time the falsity of the once widely prevalent belief that w^omen as a class are appreciably or at all inferior to men in the major aspects of intellect. The essential equality of the sexes has further been shown by psychometric methods to obtain also in various special fields, such as musical ability, artistic ability, mathematical ability and even mechanical ability. The enfranchisement of women and their invasion of polidcal, commercial and other fields of action formerly reserved to men have accorded increasingly convincing evidence that sex differences in practical abilities are also either nonexistent or far less in magnitude than they have commonly been thought to be.”

    From the standpoint of intellectual achievement, it need hardly be disputed that women still rank below men. This might be explained by their social limitations, or perhaps by physical limitations.
    It has been suggested that because women mature earlier (correlated with the earlier onset of puberty) they become mentally “set” sooner. This would seem to be borne out in literature, the theater and a number of professions where women achieve fame at an earlier age than men, but do not as a rule progress as far. As we write this, Dr. Richard J. Block of New York reports that he has found chemical difierences between male and female brains. But this we know: There cannot be any difference in the “mental” genes that men and women carry, with the reservation that if there are any “mental” genes in the X chromosomes, women receive more of them than do men.

    AMRAM SCHEINFELD, You and Heredity, pp. 228, 229, Frederick A. Stokes Company, 1949.

  106. pedro, yes I have a copy. Not sure what edition. He cites Terman, presumably because he was in the news at the time. Scheinfeld seems to hedge a bit, and he is trying to be a good liberal. But he admits the fact that women have achieved less intellectually than men. He is apparently also writing pre Lyon hypothesis, because women have one X chromosome randomly switched off in each cell, so that they do not get the double dose that he writes of.

    One of Stove’s arguments is that he is reasoning purely inductively. He says that he does not care what the scientific data are found to show from time to time. He says that the evidence is that something has always held women back, and he believes it must be something constitutive to women, even if the precise problem has not been located.

    Scheinfeld fails to mention, perhaps because it was unknown at the time, that men cluster more around the mean on most mental traits. I think even Terman found that. Also, men’s testosterone levels probably dispose us more to intellectual risk-taking and drive. I have seen quite a few female biologists doing their thing. They are perfectly competent, but they seem happy to noodle along in their respective research fields, often in some man’s lab. I knew an exceptionally clever young woman who had every opportunity. Last I heard, she was working in a lab in New York, run by a man. At her age, she should have her own lab. This is a typical example.

  107. To continue. Scheinfeld touches on a point Schopenhauer made too; that women mature earlier but do not develop mentally as far as men do ultimately. I suspect this is one reason girls do well in school, but then fail to capitalise.

    As for mathematical ability, I don’t think Terman’s confidence in women has been borne out. Most dispassionate people would agree that women still lag in mathematical performance, at least at the highest levels of talent.

    On the equality of IQ scores, well, the original IQ test was set up to give males and females equal scores, through relative weighting of verbal, visuo-spatial and mathematical skills. So, that is hardly surprising.

  108. I meant to write above, of course, that women cluster about the mean more than men in many mental traits, including IQ. At very high levels, above 140 say, there are many more men than women. That, in itself, would explain a large part of Stove’s observations.

  109. an observer says:


    The female iq curve is quite peaked, with more around the mean.

    The male iq curve is much flatter, with more men at each end of the distribution.

    The average woman is typically in the ‘readers digest’ group between 85 and 115. That’s nothing to write home about.

  110. Opus says:

    Schopenhauer wrote that women reached their intellectual peak at the age of eighteen and then stayed there. Of course most women did not have tertiary education (or perhaps even secondary) when he wrote his essay, and I would prefer to amend his age from 18 to 21. My observation of women I had known at about that age tends to confirm Schopenhauer – they really do not seem to have developed at all intellectually, indeed if anything regressed as they allow their emotions, and the cares of motherhood to over-rule their intellect, but I certainly believe, rightly or no, that I intellectually outstrip my 21 year old self. The Romans, who divided childhood into three periods, 0-7, 7-14, and 14-21 – added at fourth period solely for men, 21-28, because of young men’s propensity for recklessness – obviously women over 21 were not so prone, which biologically makes sense as from 21 that seems to be the age at which most have children, which inevitably is inimical to risk as they will then surely seek security. One way or the other men are always pushing the boundary: some do it physically, others mentally. The reasoning that one so often encounters in the Androsphere from (certain) women hardly encourages one to believe in equal intellectual ability as between men and women. The more emotion you have the less mind you will evince.

    Having said that, the only time I took an IQ test – from a book or newspaper, and not under proper conditions – I seem to recall scoring only about 90. 😦 Perhaps I was then a teenager.

  111. an observer says:


    I’d imagine that teenage hormone fluctuation induces havoc. Frontal lobe function, higher order thinking and reasoning ability would all be affected. Test validity is also questionable. I wouldn’t put much stock in a single test score – particularly when the tests are regularly revised to reflect changing cultural mores.

  112. The reasoning that one so often encounters in the Androsphere from (certain) women hardly encourages one to believe in equal intellectual ability as between men and women.
    No need to limit to the testostosphere, the Christian Forums group was a veritable terrarium of closed study as is equality central.

  113. grerp says:

    I think my husband is reasonably happy (or at least he tells me he is) and he doesn’t do a lick of housework. Really, almost nothing. But that’s our deal: he works and has a little side business he more or less does for his own personal development, and I do all the cooking, cleaning, housework and yard work, except for the mowing (which is not onerous, I’ve landscaped most of it with flowers and herbs). And nearly all of the child care.

    I’ve never been able to get him to help with the housework, not even when I was working full-time and commuting, so we’ve worked out this arrangement and are both pretty happy with it.

    For the most part I don’t mind housework and sometimes even like it. I don’t care to sit still and have a tendency to worry. Doing physical stuff helps to slow down the whirring of my brain. Thursday I had a bad mammogram; I came home and cleaned the heck out of the upstairs. It helped. I can’t do anything about the mammogram result, can’t make it cooler, can’t make it rain, but I can sweep, dust, vacuum, and clean the bathrooms and whip up some macaroni salad.

  114. deti says:

    Best to you, grerp, on that mammogram. Hope it turns out well in the days and months ahead.

  115. Dalrock says:

    You will be in our prayers grerp.

  116. Twenty says:


    Saw your worrying news on Twitter, so would like to take this opportunity to wish you well. May subsequent enquiries reveal the whole thing to be a false alarm.

  117. grerp says:

    Thanks, deti, Dalrock, and Twenty. I’m hoping for a benign result on next week’s biopsy. I appreciate any prayers and good thoughts. I actually feel guilty for draining our savings this way and costing my husband so much money for something they keep telling is probably not cancer, but he says that my health is very important to him and to not worry about the other. I think women often underestimate how generous men can be when they care about something or someone. 🙂

  118. Anonymous Reader says:

    grerp, get the biopsy, get a second opinion, do what needs doing – but think long and hard about any chemo, the compounds used are not just toxic, they are carcinogenic.

    Your husband is exactly right. I don’t how he puts it, but i’ll say this: savings can be built back up, because he can get more money. Dollar bills are replaceable. Good people are not.

    You’ll have more invisible supporters than you know.

  119. “The female iq curve is quite peaked, with more around the mean. The male iq curve is much flatter, with more men at each end of the distribution..”

    An Observer is right:

    “…on average, men are more intelligent than women. Nor do the shocks to the noisy advocates of equal opportunities stop there, I’m afraid.

    For not only is the average man more intelligent than the average woman but also a clear and rather startling imbalance emerges between the sexes at the high levels of intelligence that the most demanding jobs require.

    For instance, at the near-genius level (an IQ of 145), brilliant men outnumber brilliant women by 8 to one. That’s statistics, not sexism.”

    RICHARD LYNN, “Men are More Brainy Than Women”, The Daily Mail, May 2010

  120. You will be in my prayers, grerp.

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  122. Opus says:

    Further on the subject of the Intellectual Inferiority of Women: Even if it were the case that there were no differences between the sexes in relation to intellect, women (I much regret to say) frequently give the impression of inferiority by resorting (as must be natural to them) to behaviour which mitigates against the continuation of rational thought: Passive/Aggresive, Sulking, playing the Pussy-Pass, and all the other types of behaviour which which is the meat of the Man-o-sphere. If I stop practising free kicks because you annoy me I will never become as good at taking them as David Beckham: If I resort to shaming language to get my way, I will never develop fortitude, or the skill at calmly resolving the problem which faces me. Thus even the brightest of women can at times give the impression they are no more capable than a fish-wife, or at least no more capable of carrying on despite adversity. What can one say of the female (Judge) presiding in the recent 7/7 enquiry who broke down in tears!

  123. GKChesterton says:


    I’m deeply sorry to hear that. I have just said a prayer. May God deal well with you and may the saints pray for your healing.

  124. grerp says:

    Thanks, David and Anonymous Reader. I try really hard to make healthy life choices with diet, exercise, and herbs, so if it comes to it, I will carefully research treatment options. I’m praying the results will not require educating myself further, though.

  125. sunshinemary says:

    Trying to discuss these issues with my husband in my newfound state of red-pill lucidity tends to lead to surreal conversations in which I explain to him that I will probably push and complain to get him to do something I want him to do (i.e. housework) but that if he gives in and does what I want, then I will probably begin to despise him and lose interest in him sexually, so he shouldn’t do what I tell him to do, he should do what he wants instead, to which he responds, “But if I now don’t do what you will tell me to do because you have told me not to do what you tell me to do, isn’t that the same as doing what you tell me to?” And I get confused. Probably a result of my lower intellectual abilities.

  126. MarcoP says:

    Keeping a house tidy isn’t even 10% of what whiners like Katy Guest make it to be. And NEWSFLASH!!! Electric dishwashers are now so cheap there’s really no reason why any couple with at least a couple hundred in the bank to spare should fight over whose turn it is. (And cheap as it may be, it will last you YEARS, Einstein!) And all this braindead nagging about gastro-intestinal safety and magazines back on the shelf can be more accurately diagnosed as Attention Whoring.

  127. Looking Glass says:


    He points out a logical problem, but it’s only a “logical problem” and not a real one. What is being dealt with is actually subconscious, physical (biological) realities. Constructed logic doesn’t really apply to how you’ll respond. You respond by your innate response triggers. Thusly, he just needs to not give in when you are nagging.

    Or you can tell him the advice is what another man would give him, which removes the problem. He’s free to read/comment around here. 🙂

  128. HeligKo says:


    I have been thinking a lot about these issues. Its not that a woman/wife can’t ask for assistance, and that the couple can’t negotiate what is best for their household, but that the nagging or other power plays and manipulations that women will use to get their way that create the problems.

    I still think the best picture is the captain and first officer example. The duties are different, but they are the top of their ship and from all others involved with the ship, they both have command rights. The first officer should and would be negligent if they didn’t offer advice to the captain. It simply is the captains job to make the ultimate decision on issues. Which may be that the first officer can handle things . The understanding is that the first officer is capable of handling most things that must happen, but that the captain when available has the right of command. They are partners, but the captain clearly holds seniority, and that is not up for discussion.

  129. sunshinemary says:

    HK: “power plays and manipulations that women will use to get their way that create the problems.”

    Indeed. I feel like I’m manipulating my man into not letting me manipulate him. Despite the sarcastic tone I often take in my blog comments, I’ve been taking a lot of what I’ve been reading into consideration and, well, it’s sort of upsetting. I’ve always considered myself as being somewhat better than other women because I consider myself anti-feminist; it’s uncomfortable to contemplate that I am really just as self-centered as any other woman . If I’m dreadfully honest, I fear that maybe I don’t even care whether or not housework makes my husband happy or unhappy. I just want things to be how I want them to be. Except now I know I feel that way, so I’m trying not to feel the way that I feel. I’m constantly examining my motives lately, and I don’t like what I see.

    LG:”Or you can tell him the advice is what another man would give him, which removes the problem. He’s free to read/comment around here.”

    He reads around here when I point stuff out to him. He prefers gun- or car- related blogs and doesn’t often think of reading this kind of thing on his own. I am okay with this, as it allows me to control how much of the MRA message he is exposed to. 😉

    All that being said, my husband does almost no housework. After we had been married a short time, I determined that cleaning the bathroom and kitchen would be his jobs. He dutifully mixed up a bucket of bleach water, wiped down the bathroom, and then proceeded to clean the kitchen with the same sponge and bucket of water that he had just used in the bathroom. I yelled at him and told him he was NOT to clean the bathroom or kitchen ever again. Years later, he admitted to doing it on purpose, the rat.

  130. ballista74 says:

    The more that I think about things like this, the more that I think the Christ and the Church analogy is probably more accurate than not. So in the sense of that dynamic, I’ve wondered if “respect” that the wife is to give the husband is supposed to have a certain parallel to what we are to give Christ. This said, one of the thought-provoking things out of the Manipulated Man that I really remember (since it actually stunned me and made me go back and read it a few times) was the idea that the author went into a bit of depth on that men do enough, accomplish enough, invent enough, and (paraphrasing her words) have functionally utilitarian and beautiful bodies that women should be pedestalizing the men instead of the men pedestalizing the women.

    In a way, I found the idea very appealing and very explanatory as to the times I’ve been eager to do something for my girlfriends (usually if it goes longer than a few dates) that they have requested. To answer the question, usually when I’ve done anything like housework it’s been because they’ve adequately respected me and have been thankful that I would do it (in other words, not see it as an entitlement or a demand), or as a tool to run some game.

    TL;DR to answer the question, happy husbands do housework when they feel like it. The question is whether they’re happy or not.

    (and as a little tip to the women reading this, the goal of being positive about what you have and not dwelling on what you don’t works with your marriage, too. Try finding something genuine about your husband you admire and tell him about it if you haven’t recently.)

  131. I do some housework, and now I am retired I do a bit more, but I have always done only the jobs I feel comfortable with. And I expect to be asked politely.

    SunshineMary, that paradox is a version of the ancient All Cretans are Liars paradox. It is self-reflexive. “If I tell you not to listen to me, aren’t you still listening to me?”

    I don’t think women are turned on by a man mulishly refusing to do anything. I have always done a fair bit of childcare, and I sometimes like cleaning in the kitchen, for example, because I think it is important. What I think a man has to have, and a woman respects, is firm boundaries. There are a few jobs that I think are very feminine, and my wife knows I don’t do them.

  132. tiredofitall says:

    sunshinemary says:
    “I don’t even care whether or not housework makes my husband happy or unhappy. I just want things to be how I want them to be.”

    And right there is why women will never be satisfied. No matter what her hubby says or does he’s eternally fighting against her hamster and its ever changing whims.

    He does the dishes? Well, he didn’t do them how SHE does, so it’s wrong.
    He didn’t scrub the tile in the bathroom with an old toothbrush for 45 minutes like she does? He ain’t getting credit for that either, and yet another black mark is put beside his name in her mind.

    It’s like women set us up to fail. I can count on one hand how many exes of mine wanted me to do anything around their places once they saw me work and I did anything differently than they did. I’m not talking about me half-assing something, it’s just I didn’t follow THEIR exact “flight plan”.

  133. sunshinemary says:


    I agree with you about women never being satisfied. It seems like just when we get things how we claim to have wanted them, we feel compelled to blow the whole thing up and change everything. This appears to be true at both the individual and the group level. I’m not sure why that is exactly. We don’t seem to have a talent for figuring out what we really want. Or maybe it’s that we have difficulty wanting what we have.

    As for being too rigid with housework specifications…yes, probably. After the birth of our first child, I learned to leave the room whenever my husband did anything for her (change a diaper, bathe her, etc) because I felt almost compelled to try to correct how he was doing it. It’s another reason he doesn’t do much housework, although I try not to critique him nowadays. Then again, I’m not sure this is gender-specific behavior; the summer my husband had a broken leg and I had to mow the lawn was not so fun. He used to pull a lawn chair up to the edge of the patio and make me stop about every five minutes to explain how I was doing it wrong; I just kept saying Ps 145:8 over and over in my head, “Slow to anger, rich in love, slow to anger, rich in love”.

  134. tiredofitall says:


    To be honest I think the reason many women tend to never be satisfied (other than listening too intently to their hamsters) is because they are allowed to be.

    Women are forgiven far too easily for being flighty and indecisive, even to the point that they are never held up for making mistakes. Feminists will never admit it, but they count on this.

  135. Tam the Bam says:

    I’d say nearly every woman I’ve ever had to get into the “housework” thing with was averse to almost all aspects of it due to one simple reason.
    Absolutely hopeless at it. Not a clue (although convinced that they had).

    If I ever wanted a properly ironed shirt, shoes bulled-up properly (as in, could be used to see up line-manager’s skirt with), food cooked as individually distinct meals from one day to the next (as opposed to carbohydrate sludge tasting mainly of boiled tomatoes), vacuuming done, bogs de-skidmarked, even changing the bedlinen more than once every six months, then Monsieur Kitchen Bitch I am. And don’t get me started on sewing, mending or any of that!

    Uniformly straight-from-Mum’n’Dads’ to Uni (with cleaners and cooks) and out into a few years cheery squalor doing the “Friends”/”Bridget Jones” thing, buying new clobber and discarding the irretrievably dirty, permanent bedhead unwashed hair, while scrambling hungover and late to “work” … the only things they were any good at was useless stuff like knitting, houseplants and choosing wines (that’s what the wee number with the percent sign in the corner of the label is for ..).

    I suppose when more girls start being routinely inducted into military service for a bit this might change.

  136. sunshinemary says:


    I don’t know if this would interest you or not; I tried to write a little bit about it on my own blog, but I don’t have your head for statistics. The Bureau of Labor Statistics released its “American Time Use Survey” results for 2011, and I thought there was some interesting stuff in it regarding hours spent on housework and in the workplace, broken down by gender.

    If you were so inclined, you could probably write a much more interesting post on this than I did. 🙂

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  139. Chachi says:

    Does housework make ANYONE “happy”?

  140. ybm says:

    Yes, normal people enjoy doing things that make their lives feel more complete. Who wants to live in a filthy house? not that I would expect white upper-middle class women to understand anything other than what is directly in front of their cocaine-ringed nostrils.

  141. Chachi says:

    YBM, you keep citing upper middle class women. Do they have kids oow and divorce more than lower to middle class women?

  142. ybm says:

    I do not follow the statistics in your country, nor do I follow oow births as marriage is an institution I have little respect for. But I do know that in my country, white women in households earning 2X-5X average income are the lowest reproducing demographic of all women. It was 1.52 in 1999 when I did the research for a project. I believe I read in an article it is now below 1.25.

  143. Chachi says:

    Which country are you in?

  144. ybm says:

    You are welcome to research which country I am in but as a rule I do not disclose personal information on these blogs anymore as I have had to change my online “avatar” multiple times and close blogs I have written on.

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