Who is doing most of the chores at your home? The New York Times suggests that, if you’re a same-sex couple with kids, the split resembles that of a typical arrangement by heterosexual couples.
Gender reporter Claire Cain Miller noted that same-sex couples are known to researchers for ignoring old expectations about which chores are for men and which are for women, and instead divide duties like vacuuming and washing dishes more evenly. But Miller says new research on LGBT parents shows that dynamic changing when kids come into the picture.
“When gay and lesbian couples have children, they often begin to divide things as heterosexual couples do, according to new data for larger, more representative samples of the gay population,” Miller wrote. “Though the couples are still more equitable, one partner often has higher earnings, and one a greater share of household chores and child care. It shows these roles are not just about gender: Work and much of society are still built for single-earner families.“
The story is based on a survey of research spanning from 2016 to 2005. Here are those studies:
Journal of Lesbian Studies, 2016
Lesbian women and household labor division: A systematic review of scholarly research from 2000 to 2015
Working Paper Series, 2016
Does the gender composition in Couples matter for the division of labor after childbirth?
Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, 2015
Division of Labor Among Gay Fathers: Associations With Parent, Couple, and Child Adjustment
University of Massachusetts Amherst, 2013
The Economics of Same-Sex Couple Households: Essays on Work, Wages, and Poverty
Journal of Family Theory & Review, 2013
“Doing” and “Undoing” Gender: The Meaning and Division of Housework in Same‐Sex Couples
Economic Inquiry, 2013
Labor Supply Differences Between Married Heterosexual Women and Partnered Lesbians
Journal of Marriage and Family, 2012
The Division of Labor in Lesbian, Gay, and Heterosexual New Adoptive Parents
Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 2007
The division of labor and perceptions of parental roles: Lesbian couples across the transition to parenthood
Journal of Adult Development, 2004
Division of Labor Among Lesbian and Heterosexual Parenting Couples: Correlates of Specialized Versus Shared Patterns
Read the complete story at The New York Times. Miller took to Twitter to share a few takeaways for couples.
Things I learned from reporting this (you can send your couples therapy payments directly to me):
1 Talk about who does what, don't assume
2 If your partner is doing one thing, look around & see what else needs to be done
3 Thank them for what they do https://t.co/NFJk7Gjouc
— Claire Cain Miller (@clairecm) May 16, 2018
Reaction on Twitter had people loving the caption writers.
— David Miller (@davidimiller) May 17, 2018
— Amanda Katz (@katzish) May 16, 2018
— Max Fisher (@Max_Fisher) May 16, 2018