Families with two working spouses are more common today than ever before, and the lifestyle presents several advantages, such as increased financial stability, better balance in the relationship, and more capacity for empathy in work/life balance.
However, this working arrangement also requires compromise, planning, and realistic expectations if a marriage will thrive. With plenty of awareness and excellent communication, couples who both work full-time can have a successful and thriving marriage.
These four areas are a great starting place when navigating this challenge:
Define Roles At Home Early
When both spouses work full-time outside the home, the traditional division of labor at home requires careful examination and forethought.
Clarifying expectations and regular communication will help eliminate misunderstandings and hurt feelings. In an ideal situation, the couple will work together to divide and conquer responsibilities and find ways to make each other’s lives easier.
For example, if one spouse leaves the house early in the morning, the other spouse might have time to toss in a load of laundry before leaving for their commute. Then, the early arriving spouse can swap out the laundry when they arrive home at the end of the day.
Arguments over household roles are a leading cause of unhappiness in many marriages and having two full-time working spouses only adds to the personal stress. However, with equal management of household chores, everyone’s role is more clearly defined, and the odds of a happy marriage dramatically increase.
Seek Out Regular Help
There’s nothing wrong with asking for regular help when trying to manage a dual-career household. Finding ways to delegate tasks, hiring help for children or afterschool care, or making business decisions to lighten the load are all reasonable methods to ensure your marriage thrives.
For instance, for men or women working as an attorney, the profession’s long hours and demanding tasks can be challenging to manage. Outsourcing a portion of the work to a qualified team like elitelawyermanagement.com can free up significant time in your schedule.
Outsourcing at home is a great option, too. Signing up for a meal delivery service, hiring a housekeeper, or outsourcing lawn care can allow spouses to spend their downtime together or with children instead of taking care of the home constantly. The amount of stress that can be avoided is well worth the price.
Be Flexible In Prioritizing Each Other’s Work
There are guarantees of sick days, doctor’s appointments, and childcare issues in marriages where there are children. When both spouses work full-time, it can be difficult to decide who must manage the issues and who must still be at work.
Often, couples who disagree on this issue find themselves resentful of the other spouse or feel like their spouse doesn’t take their job seriously. Understanding that both positions are equally important while maintaining flexibility is critical.
For instance, the spouse with the most paid sick leave may need to be the primary caregiver for unplanned situations. Or, the spouse with the most flexibility to work from home can take the lead and switch out when necessary.
Understand Difficult Choices Might Be Required
When both spouses are working full-time, career growth can be a tricky situation to navigate. Promotions, relocations, and new opportunities are bound to surface, and both sides will require flexibility.
It’s essential to discuss this potential scenario early in the marriage, so neither spouse is disappointed when they have to forego a promotion instead of staying in the same city for the sake of their spouse’s position.
The important thing is to maintain communication and to keep the big picture in mind.