Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Mental Load

This cartoon illustrates the burden of mental load.  It's closely related to the concept of emotional labor, and is a leading reason why people -- especially women -- are exhausted so often.

My partner and I divided the workload based on ability and interest.  We share tasks that we both love or both hate.  But most of it is divided because we prefer and are good at different tasks.  That means my partner does the vast majority of the organizing and I do all the vermin control.  It works for us.  Because if we tried to assign those tasks based on crotch shape, it would be an absolute disaster, and we are not idiots.

Now, it doesn't have to be exactly equal in type.  Our balance has shifted back and forth over the years, depending on who was making more of the income.  But the people in a relationship should each be contributing approximately equal effort and receiving approximately equal benefit.  If it's too uneven, that's not stable, and tends to break down over time. 

So think about the balance in your relationships, and for the love of fuck, express your appreciation for whoever does the "thankless" tasks. There is absolutely no reason why they should be thankless.  You are capable of saying "Thank you for doing the dishes" or giving your partner a smooch or whatever other form of appreciation they value.
Tags: art, family skills, gender studies, life lessons, networking, reading, safety
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