Is it hell working from home with your husband? Part 2

Maria Varallo -  is it hell working from home with your husband?Kris Semple - is it hell working from home with your husband?Last week Maria Varallo started to answer whether it’s hell working from home with your husband by explaining how she works from home with her husband Kris. Today she talks about splitting the household jobs and how working from home affects their relationship:

How do you divide up domestic responsibilities?
I do the cooking during the week if I can. Before we had the children and were both employed Kris did most of the cooking now it’s reversed.
If I put on the washing in the morning he’ll put it out if I’m out, he is aware and I think that’s because he also works from home. Sometimes he’ll put the washing on because I’ve been out working a couple of days in the week.
The great thing about working from home with your husband is Kris is far more sensitive to what needs doing. I especially have noticed over the years as my work has grown and become more established how the house becomes very relaxed.

Does it ever cause friction?
Working in the house does not cause friction but can cause stress for me. There are times I find it too much being Mum and wife whilst being a professional all at once.
In hindsight we both agree we should have built two smaller offices in the garden instead of one large one that doubles up as a spare room or guest room.
However I could not share the office with him because we are together a lot and to actually be in the same room working would just be too much for me.

How do you think working from home affects your relationship?
I believe it’s brought us closer, I couldn’t do my work without his support even though he has no idea at times what I’m talking about but he listens which is very important. It’s the same for him, not having a team physically around him to bounce ideas off instead he has me!

What’s the best and worst thing about working from home with your husband?

Sharing and mutual support – flexibility of helping each other out and therefore the family. It’s definitely enriched our relationship and it feels like we’re very much a team. Our boys take it for granted that we’re both around, I’m very proud of our life style it expresses our values. Looking back it’s been such a good decision yet at the time it seemed such a big risk, it was a carefully thought through and deliberate decision while the boys were young.

Most of Maria’s work is for Illuminate, a charity she helped start three years ago in Cambridge. She also coaches private clients, and designs and delivers workshops for other organisations.

Many thanks to Maria for spilling the beans on her working and living arrangements. How do you feel about working from home with your husband?

Posted in: Family

About the Author:

Judy Heminsley is the founder and editor of Work from Home Wisdom. She believes in the benefits of home working for the individual, the family, the community and the planet. Judy set up one of the first Jelly groups in the UK and is the author of Work from Home (How to Books).

22 Comments on "Is it hell working from home with your husband? Part 2"

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  1. madgiemadge says:

    A very interesting piece, thank you Judy and Maria. I think Maria is lucky that her husband gets on does household tasks. My husband rarely notices what needs doing, if he is busy, work comes first. I think men and women are different as even if I am piled high with work jobs I cannot get on with it until a minimum of household tasks are complete. I am miserable and cannot concentrate on my work even though I have a studio away from the house I hate the thought of going back into chaos. Most of the tasks are either to be done by me or him. I do all washing related tasks, he sometimes cooks, but I usually organise the shopping. Occasionally he will vaccuum the house, but never dust it. This could turn into a massive rant so I will leave it there. I still admit that I enjoy both of us working from home, it’s great to be involved in each other’s daily news. We cannot share a work space though.

  2. Judy says:

    I’m sure you’re not the only one, Madge! I think men’s eyes must be made in a different way to women’s because I’ve never met one apparently able to see dust.
    The thing I hate more than anything is going into the kitchen after a hard day’s work to cook supper, only to find I’ve got to wash up first. Guaranteed to put me in a foul mood.

  3. madgiemadge says:

    yes, I know that one! I know somebody very close to me who lives in the same house who goes to the kitchen, (about an hour before I arrive to make a meal) not noticing how gleamingly clean and tidy it is, and gets out a loaf of bread, butter and GOLDEN SYRUP and preceeds to combine all the ingredients in a messy smeary way all over everything, eats it and leaves….I find this regularly before I prepare a meal and have to clear it first…….grrrrr. If he was to start the meal he wouldn’t clear it up first, by the way.

    • Judy says:

      In my case it’s because we haven’t cleared up the stuff from the last meal that doesn’t go in the dishwasher. Shocking, I know, but there we are, once I get in front of the computer I forget to go down and do the washing up. And since Andy usually cooks…

  4. Maria says:

    Hi Madge and Judy, I know it’s very common I have girlfriends who say the same about their men. Kris has a Finnish Mum and I’m sure it’s something about his up bringing and her working … I’m hoping my boys turn out the same. Housework has become such low priority in the week as I’ve just got more and more involved in my business.
    Your description of the loaf of bread and golden syrup made me laugh that’s exactly what my boys do! But I’m on to them:)

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