How Outsourcing Save My Marriage


Friction is a clash of wills, temperaments and opinions.

As in all other marriages, I have…friction.

And the friction in my marriage is cause by the difference in opinions on…housework.

I like to think that I have some dark unresolved issue and it is sabotaging my relationship with my husband. Like there is a complex issue at hand. But no, the problem is miniscule. It is housework. We fight about housework. Isn’t that laughable?

We are both working and we both don’t want to do housework! I am not a feminist, I just don’t like to do housework and I am not good at it. My husband thinks I should do it because well, you know, I’m the wife. The woman. In my husband’s world of wisdom, the woman should do the housework.

The reality is, this laughable matter about housework is not really laughable at all. I hated doing housework and I grew bitter when I know he is not helping. To my husband, that is how I should took care of his property. To me, I just became the designated housekeeper.

While many other couples are dealing with lack of communication, infidelity etc, me and the husband fought over who should do the ironing. He doesn’t want to do it. Neither do I. So we spend our time together at home bickering and arguing.

If I quoted to him a hadeeth on the Prophet, such as our Prophet (saw) mends his own clothes, my husband will ignore it and claim that I am using the religion to serve my self interest. It is interesting to note, however, that he has no problem using religion to remind me of my duties to serve his self interest. Is Islam HISlam? I wonder.

I am not man bashing here. There is a happy ending to this tale.

So when both parties are so adamant on what they do not want to contribute in the marriage, in this case housework, what then are we to do? After all, housework still needs to get done and I am starting to feel resentful that the husband is not coming forward to assist.

I decided to be honest with the husband. I told him I was not happy. I told him taking care of the housework makes me feel like a maid and a mother to him.

“I don’t care if you think I should do it. I am not going to do it alone.”

“Let’s outsource this thing” he said.

So he does care about me.

Now you may think that this is the obvious choice of solution, that we could have thought about it earlier, or that I might even be happy hearing it. But there’s only 2 of us living in the house, we dont have much housework compared to a family of 5. I wanted to be thrifty and I think if my husband meets me halfway and does half of the housework, this wouldn’t be a problem. Because in my world of wisdom, BOTH of us should do the housework.

But if my husband meets me halfway, I wouldn’t write this post.

So taking the path of least resistance, we hired a part time housekeeper. Let’s call her S. S’s services is not cheap but it is affordable. She is a local which is what I wanted and the husband found her through a series of referrals. There are social issues that I do not want to face with hiring a help that lives with you. With S, it was simple, she comes she do and she leaves. I don’t have to worry that she is going to steal my husband or steals from me, get pregnant or run away. And because S is a local, I don’t have to watch her work or train her because she understands the local expectation and standards.

Verdict? The best decision I have ever made.

I  got to reclaim my off days on the weekend. I don’t catch up on housework on my days off. I don’t think of my piling laundry or ironing after a day’s work because I know I can depend on S to do it. It’s like the perfect relationship.

Me and the husband? Much happier. We sit over dinner after a long day and talk to each other instead of bantering of who should do the laundry. Before, he would sit on the couch and turn on TV and I’ll be ironing, or doing laundry or dishes. Now, both of us sits on the couch. Together.

See, I told you there’s a happy ending. Which lead me to think, what else can I outsource to have a happier life?

JJ Yusof



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