If we were paid for the housework we do in our household, what would our salary be? Believe it or not but the equivalent of housework comes to 4,500 EUR per month!
We know the old belief that if we do not work for someone or go to work every day, we do nothing, earn nothing, and are worth nothing, which is not quite true.
Every day women clean, cook, wash and iron the laundry and do other tasks in their households that are considered women’s duties without receiving a salary for it.
Do we value women’s housework enough?
In the not too distant past, women were mainly housewives. Only in the 1930s did they participate in social life by working outside the home and going to social events. Most women of past generations were brought up in our patriarchal environment to believe that housework is only women’s work, taken for granted and for which we are not paid – because “it is their duty”.
Even today, in the 21st century, the prevailing opinion is still that a woman’s place is at home, in the kitchen and with the children.
If that’s a woman’s choice, that’s fine, because that’s her way of doing it. But women are still fighting to be paid in the same jobs as our male counterparts, fighting the glass ceiling and all the other challenges that have been imposed on us.
Importance of women in keeping the house in order
We know that a woman holds all four corners of the house and, as they say, supports the fifth, which is still the case in many families today.
Many women who do not go to work every day, but only manage the household and take care of the children at home. They usually become dissatisfied with themselves after a certain period of time, because deep in their subconscious they feel that they are not good enough. They think they are not worth anything because they do not earn anything, or maybe some of them have allowed their husband/partner to devote himself to his career at the expense of her career. This can often be an expression of low self-confidence in the future and in some cases is the cause of anxiety and depression.
At one stage in life of one of our friends, she was just a housewife taking care of the kids. So, she struggled with herself and her beliefs and tried very hard to believe that she was worth it, even though she was not earning anything and contributing financially to the family budget. Fortunately, this period was short-lived and it helped her change her old beliefs and become aware of her values.
New generation and challenges they are facing
Today, young girls are not really prepared to live with their partners, hardly any of them know how to sew, cook or iron. This is understandable to a certain extent, because we live in a hectic everyday life, some young women give priority to their careers, so they may still have someone to do it for them, and maybe no one taught them these chores.
Every girl should know at least some of the basics of housework and, if her circumstances allow, have a housekeeper or servant in the house – she should know them to be able to judge whether the work is being done well.
In today’s 21st century, things are changing for the better, slowly, but they are changing. Men are increasingly participating in the so-called women’s jobs and sharing with their partners the duties and responsibilities of the household, childcare and child-rearing. They are attending births and going on maternity leave to participate equally in raising their children. I said it is changing slowly, but it is changing because marriage or partnership is a shared journey of two souls growing and developing in parallel.
If we were paid for the housework we do in our household, what would our salary be?
Have you ever wondered what is the value of all the housework women do? We contacted several companies that offer professional housekeeping services. The amounts we used for the calculation are averages because there are many different price quotes on the market.
As an example, we took an average family of four with one child of preschool age and one child of school age living in a 60 m2 flat.
The mother and wife, let us call her Ana, whose working day starts at 7:00 AM in the morning and lasts until 9:00 PM in the evening (we concede her 8 hours of sleep, even if sometimes it is not a full 8 hour of sleep, for example, when the children are sick) and during this time she does various household chores for which she does not receive a salary.
Here you can see how much Ana would earn per day, i.e. per month, if she were paid for her work in doing the daily housework and taking care of the children on a normal day/month in her family.
Average amounts per hour for professional services were used for the calculation as washing clothes, cleaning the apartment, vacuuming, ironing, cleaning windows, putting away cupboards, etc.
Total Earnings come up to 4,515 EUR!
Are you perhaps a little in shock now? Did you expect this amount? Do you perhaps think that the amount is too high?
It is not too high, because according to a research of an American portal, housewives in America earn more than $7,000 a month because their service prices are higher than ours.
Do not let these amounts plunge you into depression.
As long as you are younger, at full strength, the children are small, we all work at full speed and we can and do manage to do all the work. But the older you are, the wiser you are. When the children grow up, be sure to involve them in daily tasks according to their age, give them some tasks permanently (such as cleaning the bathroom), because this is the best way for them to learn, acquire work habits and earn their pocket money at the same time.
And when the children leave the family nest – then reduce the housework or reduce it to a minimum, because other priorities appear in your life.
Do not waste your precious time with frequent dusting, vacuuming and ironing, but use that time to do what makes you happy and fulfilled, and maybe turn some of your hobbies into a business you enjoy.
From my nearly six decades of wise experience, I know that the financial value of the housework we do, or the work we do at work, and how much we earn, all of that matters less, because first and foremost, we need to live each day with love for ourselves, because life goes by very quickly for us.
And so, ladies, when you start doing the dishes, or the ironing, or preparing lunch, and if you do not really like doing it, remember that all these household chores have their own value, and if you do them with love, it will return to us many times over, because we know that love multiplies through sharing.
Now change your old beliefs, realize that women are valuable and that we deserve even if we do not do anything, even if we do not receive a salary for the work we do in our house, and even if women (sometimes) do not contribute financially to the family budget.
And as Audrey Hepburn said so beautifully – “Tomorrow is a new day”, so whatever you do, do it with love and remember to always love yourself first.
For everything else, there’s Invoice Crowd.