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by Abigail Van Buren

Man Expects Woman Working From Home to Keep House, Too

DEAR ABBY: As the pandemic has forced many to work remotely, I feel certain I'm not the only person with this dilemma. I have been working from home since last March. My fiance, on the other hand, has a manual labor job in a skilled trade. Abby, it seems like every other day he picks a fight with me because he thinks I should have the house clean, chores done and dinner cooked when he returns from work, despite the fact that I have been working at my job all day.

He equates my being home to me being able to take care of all the chores. He criticizes me and calls me lazy and other names all the time. Regardless of what he thinks, I have a demanding job in an IT field, which is no less demanding because I'm home. It involves numerous conference calls all day.

I have an opportunity now where some of us can come back to the office, but because I have an autoimmune disease, I'm hesitant. Should I go back to the office to keep the peace or remain working from home, which I actually enjoy? I have talked to him about this repeatedly, and it not only doesn't seem to be getting any better, it's getting worse. Your thoughts? -- TELECOMMUTING IN FLORIDA

DEAR TELECOMMUTING: Your physical health must come first. If returning to the office will endanger your health, you must stay home and protect it.

Your mental health comes next. Your fiance appears to be having a chauvinistic fever dream in which he has been transported back to the 1950s. For the last quarter of a century -- and more -- men have been helping their partners with the "chores" he's harassing you about. If he can't dig deep and find it in his heart to chip in, then for the sake of your health and your sanity, please rethink this engagement, because it is unhealthy.

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