The Effect of Explicitly Talking About the Division of Unpaid Tasks and The Influence Of Relative Income on the Perceived Division of Unpaid Tasks Among Dutch Parents: A Diary Study
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Dutch women are increasing the number of hours they spend on paid work and the wage gap with men is continuously narrowing. In contrast: the convergence in unpaid tasks at home is occurring much slower. This research aimed to investigate whether explicitly talking about the division of unpaid tasks among couples would lead to a more equal division of household tasks and childcare. Since most research about this topic is done in a qualitative manner, this research expands earlier findings because it is done in a quantitative manner. The question was to what extent explicitly talking about the unpaid tasks does lead to a more egalitarian division of household tasks and childcare. The moderating role of women’s relative income during these conversations was also examined. For eight days, we conducted a diary study among Dutch parents (N = 142). Unexpectedly, talking about the division of unpaid tasks did not predict a more equal division of childcare and household tasks. Women’s relative income did also not moderate this relationship. Gender and relative income were significant predictors of the perceived division of childcare. Future research should focus on the desire of couples to divide the unpaid tasks equally and also look into within-person variance instead of solely between-person variance. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are also discussed in the current research.