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Checklist for sharing the work in your relationship

Coupleness has put together a list of responsibilities and tasks - including invisible labor - that are part of everyday life for couples. It may not capture everything that happens in your home, family and relationship, so feel free to add your own. It’s a win-win when you can open your eyes to the work you are both doing, and perhaps find new ways you can make each other’s lives easier!

  • Do the dishes

  • Take out the trash

  • Cook meals

  • Have a job that brings in money

  • Manage the family finances, setting up savings accounts and investments

  • Drive your kids or partner to school or wherever they need to go, making sure everyone is on time and where they need to be

  • Take care of the lawn and garden, or indoor plants

  • Do laundry and fold everyone’s clothes

  • Tidy up spaces by cleaning surfaces, making the bed, putting toys away

  • Remember to schedule appointments at the doctor, dentist and vet

  • Clean the floors, being a master of that broom/mop/vacuum cleaner

  • Do errands like grocery shopping, picking up the dry cleaning, buying cleaning supplies

  • Prepare the house when guests are coming

  • Do minor fixes, like replacing light bulbs, fixing wobbly tables, replacing flat pillows, changing batteries

  • Manage emails for the family, like communications with the kids’ school, neighborhood activities, family group chains, etc.

  • Buy new clothes for your children or partner to make sure everything fits and everyone looks at least somewhat presentable

  • Be the IT manager of the home, making sure the wifi is working, fixing any technological issues

  • Take care of the car, making sure it goes in for repairs and checks

  • Arrange things in the home to be cozy and comfortable, fluffing the couch cushions, lighting candles

  • Manage contact with authorities, like the health insurance company, the bank, your accountant and the IRS

  • Grab a baseball bat and brave the dark hallways to check out a sound coming from outside the front door in the middle of the night

  • Call a plumber or repair person when something in the house is broken

  • Clean the bathroom

  • Make sure the bills are paid

  • Do research before making big decisions and purchases, carefully thinking through options and outcomes

  • Plan family vacations, booking travel and lodging and making the schedule for the trip

  • Assign chores to different members of the family to make sure everything gets done

  • Project far into the future, making sure the family will be in a good position financially down the road

  • Take the initiative to plan dates and special experiences for you as a couple

  • Plan birthday parties and celebrations according to how your children or partner like to be celebrated

  • Manage the family’s social calendar, keeping track of who has been invited to dinner, when you last saw your family friends, and playdate schedules.

  • Buy holiday gifts and presents for people whose birthday parties you or your children are going to

  • Teach your children or partner new things, helping them learn different ways of taking care of things

  • Maintain contact with your extended family and friends, staying connected

  • Bring up romance and intimacy in your relationship, making sure you and your partner feel connected

  • Be someone people in the family come to when they’re upset and need a shoulder to cry on

  • Listen to your children or partner as they talk about their day and things they want to share

  • Keep track of and worry about how everyone in the family is feeling

  • Mediate conflicts within the family and helping resolve interpersonal issues

  • Bring up “tough” conversations that need to happen, like the sex talk with the kids, or talking through something in the relationship that doesn’t feel good

Ready to invest in your relationship? Download Coupleness, a relationship app full of practical tools, tips and inspiration for how to deepen your relationship.

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