Dear Carolyn: My husband and I have been married a little over a year and a half and are still adjusting to living together, I guess.
Several months ago I suggested that we each take two weekday nights and that person would be responsible for planning and cooking the meal on those days.
He is frustrated by the schedule because it turns cooking into a chore and some days he would be happy eating cereal for dinner. I’m more practical about meals (yes, dinner is a chore but we still have to eat!), and cooking for my partner motivates me to make something healthy.
Anyway, now I feel like I’m forcing this schedule on him, ruining his love of cooking.
Should we just do our own thing at dinner time? I know that bean-counting is dangerous to a relationship and I don’t want to do it, but I can’t push away this creeping resentment.
Just to get it out of the way, I’m having an eye-roll over the idea that cooking twice a week is too much of a buzzkill for him to bear. !
While “I cook for you and you serve me corn flakes” may be technically accurate, it’s a micro look at a macro arrangement. There’s no shortage of jobs required to keep a household running, and there’s also a wide range of normal for what a functional household looks like.
Since you feel strongly about dinner, then consider shouldering most of it – and have your husband assume a different burden of similar weight. For example, he can certainly shop for the groceries and do all the dishes.
If you broaden the discussion to everything that must be done to keep your lives running then you’ll be onto a division of labor that’s truly equitable. That is, as long as that’s the result you both sincerely want and are both willing to work to achieve.