Wife Who Refuses To Cook Or Clean For Her Husband Is Told She Should Be More Kind To Him — ‘Domestic Labor Is Work Not Kindness’

She pointed out that her husband is more than capable of taking care of himself.

Husband and wife cooking dinner Prostock-studio / Shutterstock

There's a long history of women completing the lion's share of housework and domestic labor. So, when content creator and working mom-of-four Paige Turner revealed her stance on cooking and cleaning for her husband — she doesn't do it — many were adamant that she was simply not a nice wife. 

Because she refuses to cook and clean for her husband, Turner was told she should be more kind to him.

In a previous TikTok, Turner explained why she doesn't do her husband's laundry. Many viewers were taken aback, arguing that things like doing laundry for your spouse are considered "small acts of kindness." 


However, Turner shared a different point of view.

@sheisapaigeturner When I first got engaged, my mother-in-law told me that I should not do my husband‘s laundry because I would learn to hate him. I didn’t take her advice, but I wish I had. When we take on domestic labor as an act of kindness towards our partners often times it set an expectation that that labor is ours. It is important that we do not take on all this domestic labor early marriage, because it set an expectation that we will continue to do so. ##domesticlabor##thementalload##thementalloadofmotherhood##divisionoflabor##marriagehumor##millennialmoms##millennialmarriage ♬ original sound - Paige

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"Here's the thing. Small acts of kindness that are mostly domestic labor just add up to work at the end of the day," she pointed out. "Here's a list of things that I don't do for my husband."

In addition to not doing her husband's laundry — she does her own and they both do their children's — she also doesn't cook dinner. Most of the dinners are prepared by her husband, while Turner's responsibility is to make breakfast and lunch.

@sheisapaigeturner Replying to @rafael it’s important to show your partner, love and kindness. And I believe in small acts of kindness for a partners. However, expecting your partner to do your laundry and all of the cooking and all of the cleaning, is not the same qe small acts of kindness. All of those things are domestic labor and then when add it up, create a lot of work. #domesticlabor #actsofkindness #actsofservice #marriagegoals #fairplay #millennialmom #mentalload #laundry ♬ original sound - Paige

"I don't pack him a lunch. If he's hungry, he'll figure out what he's going to eat for lunch the same way I do," she continued. "I don't make his doctor's appointments because, guess what, he's not making mine. Would it be kind of me to do that? For sure. Is it my job? Absolutely not."


She also doesn't schedule her husband's haircuts, pack his clothes for a vacation, or buy him new underwear when they are worn out.

"All of these are things that he's a grown man and can do himself," she concluded. 

As it is, most wives in heterosexual marriages find themselves tasked with doing most of the domestic labor. According to a 2021 Pew Research Center survey, 59% of American women say they do more household chores than their partner, while 6% say their partner does more. In heterosexual couples with children, married mothers spend an average of 18.3 hours per week on housework, while married fathers spend a mere 9.5 hours per week. Women also perform 73% of housework and 79% of childcare in households.

Mom vacuuming with her baby PH888 / Shutterstock


It's not as if Turner's husband is completely immobile or a child. He's a grown adult, as she mentioned countless times in her video, and he is perfectly capable of managing his own tasks and responsibilities. Her role as a wife isn't to uphold these outdated notions that she should be the keeper of the household, manage all of her husband's appointments, and clean up after him as if she is beneath him instead of his equal.

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Turner explained that she does acts of kindness for her husband that aren't domestic chores.

"I see a vinyl that I think he's going to like because he's creating a vinyl collection; I buy it," she said. "I'm at the store, and I see something that I think he might enjoy eating; I buy it. If I find a new non-alcoholic beer that he wants to try out, I buy it."

Turner pointed out that the things she does for her husband are actual acts of kindness — not housework. 


It is not her job as a wife or partner to be her husband's maid or personal assistant. She shouldn't be expected to complete all of the domestic labor. Women are often forced to become the default caretakers, shouldering far too many household responsibilities and emotional labor. 

@sheisapaigeturner Replying to @k3v0TeeTime The majority of women work yet the assumption remains that women do not contribute financially. Most mothers are working. Most married women are working. The majority are contributing financially. We need to stop assuming that women do not contribute to the finances. AND even if she is a SAHM that does not mean she must do everything as it relates to the house. A stay at home parent should not be required to work 24/7 when the working parent only works 40 hours a week. We need to change this narrative. Men like to claim that marriage is a team sport but they want their wives to carry their team. #workingmom #wfhmom #millennialmom #workingwoman #womeninbusiness #sahd #sahmlife ♬ original sound - Paige

Turner also brought up the point that whenever men admit that they don't do chores or cook, people automatically assume it's because they're the breadwinners and therefore are absolved of any of it. Responding to a comment from a viewer asking if Turner pays rent and insurance for her children and the house, Turner explained that it's presumptuous to just assume that women simply don't work.

"Most women, the majority of women, are working," Turner said, pointing out that most of the workforce is comprised of working mothers and women. "So yes, they are contributing to the rent, the mortgage, the insurance, the groceries, and childcare."


It's time to change the narrative surrounding labor in heterosexual marriages because women are capable of earning more than their husbands, just as men are capable of domestic labor.

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.