DEAR ABBY: I have been married for seven years and have two beautiful children. My husband and I both work full-time, yet I do almost all of the household chores. I have asked him repeatedly to help ease my workload and stress by dividing the chores more equitably, but my requests are met minimally and temporarily. This has caused arguments, tension and resentment.
He says, "You and I value different things," or, "This isn't what I want to focus on at home," or, "Your standards are too high and have negatively impacted your relationship with our kids." I do ask our kids to clean up routinely because I want them to be active members of this household, and this is how I was raised.
It's putting a strain on my marriage and affecting my feelings toward my husband. Do I need to let this go? Or are my priorities misplaced? -- OUT OF BALANCE IN RHODE ISLAND
DEAR OUT OF BALANCE: From your husband's perspective, why should he have to help with the housework if he can jawbone you into doing the lion's share? Perhaps you should offer him a choice -- participate more or someone will have to be hired to take some of the burden off your shoulders.
As to your children, please stick to your guns. It is important they master basic housekeeping skills so that when they become adults, they will be able to take care of themselves. Few children relish the idea of doing housework, but many of them do it anyway as a way to earn an allowance.