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Being a mom is not an easy job. It involves taking care of not only yourself, but others too, physically, psychologically, and financially. The joke has even been made that husbands are kind of like having an extra kid around to take care of. Is it just a joke, or it there some truth to it?

Why Husbands Tend To Cause More Stress Than Kids

In 2013, TODAY ran a survey of more than 7,000 US mothers to determine the stress mothers face and where it comes from. The results are not exactly surprising. Mothers report an average stress level of 8.5 out of 10, the greatest stressor for almost half of them being not their kids, but their husbands.

Most mothers in the survey expressed different specific causes of the stress they face. To begin with, they felt that they didn’t have enough time to do everything they needed to do. How does this relate to their husbands? Apparently, many mothers feel that most of the parenting and household responsibility falls onto them rather than being shared equally with their husbands. If something isn’t done, it’s the mom’s fault, not the dad’s.

How Unequal Is The Division Of Work?

Statistics show that, in general, moms do double what fathers do in terms of parenting and daily jobs around the house. In that light, it is true that moms often choose to take on tasks like cooking, laundry, and cleaning rather than letting their husbands do them. That way, the jobs can be done to their satisfaction.

Yet it is impossible not to note that as an adult, there is no reason why a father’s ability to perform such tasks should fall below a mother’s.

Different Parenting Styles Means More Stress For Mothers

In terms of taking care of the children, when parents disagree on how to parent, that undoubtedly causes stress as well. Studies have shown that men and women have biological differences in parenting styles overall. Fathers are more likely to avoid conflict and are less likely to be mindful of others’ needs than mothers.

It’s not hard to see why that kind of behavior would leave moms feeling like their husbands are really another kid in the family rather than their equals. When the laundry or dishes need to be done, fathers are more likely to choose to relax on the couch than do the work.