8 Strategies to not let housework ruin your marriage

Have you ever let a dirty house or any other type of housework get the better of you and led you to fight with your spouse?

Me too!

Today, I am going to share 8 strategies I use that keep me from ruining my marriage over housework.


a bouquet of flowers in the background. The picture has a white translucent overlay with a black border and words on top. The words say: 8 strategies to not let housework ruin your marriage.

My Weakness

I have a confession to make: I  hate housework.

I don’t enjoy cleaning and I wish I could leave it to someone else.

Since I have 3 kids, there is always a mess to clean up. They love to just up empty toy boxes for the sake of it and skater crumbs around the house.

I often feel like I am the only one in the house who cleans or who puts any effort into cleaning.

Since having kids, it has been harder to not let these issues become big barriers in my relationship with my husband.

When I am upset about the house and the mess, it is tempting to blame him for the mess and get upset.

What I am going to do to change

Getting mad at my husband has never solved the problem. If anything, it has made things worse. Because now, not only is my house still a mess but I have to mend fences with people in the house.

So, instead of letting housework get in the way of my marriage, I have tried to implement a few strategies.

8 Strategies to stop housework from ruining my marriage 

1. Work on your strengths

During the first month of our marriage, my husband and I bought a new dining room table and 8 chairs. We brought the furniture home and started putting things together.

Stereotypically, men are better at putting things together. We soon realized that in our case that was not true. We found that I was better at reading directions and knowing what parts fit together and my husband was better at doing the heavy lifting.

Since that discovery, we have never had an argument while trying to put together furniture.

We understand each other’s weaknesses and strengths and we work accordingly.

Workload should not be decided by the stereotypical gender lines. They should be decided on who is the best person on the team to do the job.

My husband has a hard time keeping track of our finances and paying bills, so I do that. But, my husband is the superior bathroom cleaner so he does that.

2. Let it be

When my husband did the dishes for the first time, I almost had a nervous breakdown.

In my eyes, he was doing it all wrong.

The way he was doing the dishes was so different than the way I would do them.

But, instead of making him change his ways or be frustrated over how he was doing the work, I let it go.

I chose to be thankful he was doing the dishes and let him do it his way.

Sometimes it’s best to just let it go instead of fighting or nagging or pestering.

Letting things go is better for your relationship and will build teamwork and respect between the two of you.

If you choose to nag and nitpick, his ego will be hurt and you will be creating distance between each other.

3. Communicate

My husband is not perfect and neither am I.

So when things don’t get done around the house I try not to get angry and I don’t seek to get even.

Over the years I have learned that the best thing to do is to calm down and talk about it.

So, when the time is right, I will look at my husband and ask: Hun, can you please wash the pots tonight?

When I speak gently, he is more likely to respond in a loving way than get angry himself.

4. Split up the work

Even though I am a stay-at-home mom, the household responsibilities don’t all fall to me.

As a couple, we decided early on what chores I would do and what he would do.

The split of work does not have to be 50/50, but it is important that you are both happy with the workload.

5. Be Flexible

Even though we did decide what we were each happy doing, our chores are not set in stone for the duration of our life.

If we are not happy with how things are being done then we talk about it and look to change our responsibilities and try something new.

6. Compromise

I have a long list of things that need to be done around the house.

I would love it if I could get all those things done in one day.

But I am the worst homemaker out there and I hate housework.

The chances of things getting done right away or all the time are slim.

So, I have to compromise with myself to change the list and make it smaller.

It’s easier for me to feel like I have achieved something if my list is broken up into manageable tasks.

Since I give myself a break, I think it’s best to also give my husband a break.

Sometimes he starts a task late at night and wants to finish, but I know he is tired and has had a long day.

Instead of expecting him to finish, I tell him he can finish the next day.

7. Choose love

There are so many ways to love your spouse in housework.

For me, coming home to a clean house is a recurring dream.

I would love to come home from a morning away and find the toys away and the floors clean.

When reality hits and I find the house in the worst state than I left, I choose love.

I thank my husband for taking care of the kids and for doing the best job that he could.

Another way I love my spouse is by doing his chores for him.

As I have said, his job is to clean the kitchen after dinner.

One of his least favourite tasks is cleaning the pots and pans.

Oftentimes, he leaves this task for last or does not do it at all.

Instead of getting mad, I love him by doing the pots and pans and expecting nothing in return.

He comes home and he sees the work I have done and knows that I have just done an act of love.

My actions is also a good way to tell my husband that I respect him for the work he does outside the home and that understand that he is tired from a long day.

8. Choose who your cleaning for

I often forget that I am not really doing this for my children or for my husband.

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.”

Colossians 3:23 NKJV

If I change my heart and work for The Lord, then chores become an opportunity to serve God, to worship Him and to thank Him for all that He has given us. It makes the chores *almost* enjoyable. 

Housework is never-ending but it does not need to be a battle or something that can ruin your relationships. Before you blow up at your kids or your husband for not doing something you want them to, go back and refer to these 8 strategies. I know they will help you. 

In the comments, share how you keep household duties from ruining your marriage. Please share this post with friends and family. Thank you. 

a couple cooking in the kitchen. the husband is lifting the spoon to his wife's mouth so she can have a taste. The image has an overlay on it with words that say: 8 strategies to not let housework ruin your marriage
A man holding a broom next to a women holding a cleaning supplies basket. They are both smiling. The words: Don't let housework ruin your marriage are above the picture

82 responses to “8 Strategies to not let housework ruin your marriage”

  1. Real Women Talk 2 Avatar

    What a great post! I might have to use these tips as a reminder to check myself when I feel overwhelmed by the housework. lol. I can say though that the book titled “The Five Love Languages” was a game changer for us! We received this book as a gift from our pastor during our premarital sessions and it helped me to realize what matters to me and also my husband. Identifying our love languages helps us out even today with how to work best together in regards to tackling the house chores.

    1. anne.markey1@gmail.com Avatar

      We love that book as well!! I recommend it to everyone!!

  2. Ravi Avatar

    Communication & compromise are important..Every problem comes with a solution.

  3. jehava Avatar

    This is so great. I love this.

  4. Lauren C. Moye Avatar

    Great advice! We keep a very flexible chore line to keep the workload divided fairly between us. I was doing almost all the housework, but I’ve noticed since some of my husband’s school stress has come to an end that he’s started stepping up and randomly doing some of my chores for me.
    I’ve got to say, it’s nice to suddenly not be responsible for all of it and keeping up with a toddler. 🙂

  5. Ashley Avatar

    Communicate and SPLIT UP THE WORK!! YES!!! and I find that Spliting the work is NOT the same as doing the work TOGETHER. For us, doing the work together (like same job at the same time) NEVER works because we each have our own way of doing it and end up micromanaging the other. Best to just separate the jobs 🙂

  6. Nadica Avatar

    Great post. Definitely communications is the key. Everyone should do something to help around the house. Not only the husband but kids too. 🙂

    1. anne.markey1@gmail.com Avatar

      Yes, I am slowly getting the kids involved as well!!

  7. Lori Avatar

    My motto – Let it Go! After almost 21 years of marriage, I am just starting to realize that his way of doing things is okay too, as long as it gets done!

    1. anne.markey1@gmail.com Avatar

      Letting go can be so hard but so good

  8. Sue Tanya Mchorgh Avatar
    Sue Tanya Mchorgh

    Love your post. I am not married but i will definitely consider these when I am 🙂

  9. Meghan Avatar

    Now if I can only communicate this to my fiance lol. Thanks for the tips!

  10. McKayla Avatar

    Great post! My husband and I struggle with the housework daily. I actually enjoy cleaning, but I just can’t manage to do it all on my own. Sadly, the few chores I absolutely hate doing, he hates just as much! Haha

  11. Erica Avatar

    My husband hates cleaning. And he doesn’t notice when things are dirty anyway. So i do most of it. But he cleans the bathroom (which we determined really early on was his job) and he changes the cat litter. Since those are the two grossest jobs, I guess I’ll take it!

  12. Sharon S. (SS) Avatar

    This is a great post. Definitely something that my husband and I need to work on.

  13. Christine Avatar

    Great tips for a happy marriage of live, love and compromise! I’m fortunate to have an awesome husband that takes part in everything, even if I do like things done a certain way. 😉 Thanks for sharing!
    Christine at For The Love of Teachers

  14. lola Avatar

    repinned this post!!

  15. lola Avatar

    lollll at the heart attack from him doing the dishes. I totally understand. i usually have to let it go too. My husband will sometimes try cleanign the bathroom and then i take a look and force a thank you cause i can still see a few spots he missed. Once he leaves the house, i rescrub it again lolllll

  16. Nakeya Avatar

    This post and suggestions are great. Communications is the key. Chores does not have to hinder a marriage.

  17. Belle Avatar

    Such a lovely post! Love all the tips! My husband loves to help out at home which is always nice!

    Belle | One Awesome Momma

  18. Alexandra Avatar

    Like you, we keep household duties from ruining our marriage by having an established division of labor. But we’re flexible with it too. My Gary does the mowing, but a necessary prior task is picking up the dog’s biological deposits. Every once in a while, I’ll bless him and have it done before he mows. That’s gotten me taken out to dinner! 😉

  19. Rachel G Avatar

    Since I’m the oldest sister in a family with 7 kids….I have found housework extremely easy since getting married! 😛 Over the years, we’ve definitely come into our routines based on who is better at what–he always takes out the trash since the smell makes me gag, but I do all cooking, stuff like that. Of course it’s always nice when you’re suddenly surprised because the other did one of “your” chores! 🙂 And I try to remember how awesome I feel when he does that, and lighten his load whenever I can.

  20. Abby Avatar

    This is a very real discussion to be made within the marriage. I am so happy that we rarely argue about this. But it is good to know that you have listed some pointers to follow here.

    Abby of Life in the Fash Lane

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