Study offers another reason to cry at weddings

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Most of us can't help it, we like to cry at weddings. Perhaps we're remembering the couple when they were children, or maybe we're just recalling our naivete.

We wish the couple the best, but in our hearts we know there's something to those vows, "for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer ..."

If the vows were brought up to date, according to a University of Michigan study, they'd have to say "for more housework or less..."

For the bride, bringing home a husband means more than somebody to open the pickle jars or mow the lawn -- he also brings an extra seven hours of housework.

Marriage is a great deal for the man; having a wife means an extra hour a week he can spend watching sports instead of doing housework.

According to the study, single women in their 20s and 30s did the least housework -- about 12 hours a week on average, while married women in their 60s and 70s did the most, about 21 hours a week.

Married women with more than three kids did an average of about 28 hours of housework a week, while men in that position did only about 10 hours.

Still, men are doing more than they used to.

Since 1976, the amount of housework done by women has dropped from an average of 26 hours to 17, while men who used to do six hours a week now do about 13 hours.

For either partner, getting married means more time spent cleaning, doing laundry and dishes.

So brides, don't let this information rain on your big day, but you might want to have a long talk with your intended. And grooms -- of the future and the past -- how about pitching in a little more around the house?

And while we're at at, let's not let the kids off the hook. Children who are old enough to walk can begin learning how to do simple chores, and teenagers who have time to text their friends certainly have time to pick up their clothes.

With a little more teamwork around the house, perhaps our eyes will be clear enough at the next wedding to see the groom's knees shaking.

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