Why It’s OK to Keep Score with Your Spouse

Dr. Steven Craig is a therapist, corporate coach, and host of “Therapy Thursdays” on Detroit’s 96.3 WDVD radio. He has appeared on ABC World News Tonight with Charles Gibson as well as in the New York Times, Newsweek, Good Housekeeping, and numerous other local, national, and international publications. He lives in West Bloomfield, Michigan.

Yes, It's OK to Keep Score with Your SpouseWhen you have little ones at home, even a trip to the grocery store–alone–can seem like a hot night out. Here’s why couples will fare better during the stressful baby-raising years if they maturely arrange “trade-offs.” From The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together.

The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together

The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together

by Dr. Steven Craig

View Details

  • Get The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together
  • Get The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together
  • Get The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together
  • Get The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together

Children are adorable, but they’re still frustrating and a ton of work. That often leaves whoever is home dealing with them feeling burdened while the other is out playing, working, or even doing the grocery shopping. Many people go into the baby years insisting they won’t keep score and that “we’re in this together.” To that I say, good luck. You’d be better off if you realized that bartering will occur and you will keep score. But don’t see that as a bad thing or as a sign of selfishness. People keep score; it’s simply human nature. It only becomes a problem when people don’t talk about their feelings when they feel the situation is unfair, or when the scorecard is skewed too far in one person’s favor. I want you to have the best parenting experience you can, and in order to do that, you can’t live with blinders on. Scorekeeping and bartering are part of life and relationships. Just do it in a mature and healthy manner.

To an overwhelmed parent, just being in the store with no kids tugging at you can feel like a break. Many husbands don’t realize that while going to the store for your wife is helpful, it often doesn’t score as many points as staying home with the kids and letting her go to the grocery store. Then again, sometimes your wife will want you to do the shopping.

While one spouse is absent, the on-duty spouse usually looks forward to his or her break time and expects to cash in that chip relatively soon. I call these trade-offs. Couples need to discuss exactly what their expectations are regarding break times and what’s considered a break and what isn’t (remember the grocery store example—sometimes it’s a break; other times it’s a chore).

Understanding this is very important. I know many couples where the wife considers her husband’s work hours to be break time, whereas he considers them to be on-duty hours. Equally, I know many husbands who consider their wife’s caretaking hours as break time, which conveniently allows them to assert that they need some break time, too—like a weekend in Vegas with the guys. So make sure you define trade-offs and discuss your expectations. Those who do this honestly and openly fare far better than those who secretly keep score and deny they’re doing it.

ragu recipe

Rachael Ray’s Week in a Day Recipe: Pork Ragu

Rachael Ray is a New York Times bestselling author of more than twenty cookbooks. She is the host of the Food Network’s 30 Minute Meals and Rachael Ray’s Kids Cook-Off, as well as the Cooking Channel’s and the Food Network’s Week in a Day. She is also the star of the syndicated talk show Rachael Ray; founder and editorial director of her own lifestyle magazine, Every Day with Rachael Ray; and founder of the Yum-o! organization.

RoastLegLamb567

Pat LaFrieda’s Roasted Leg of Lamb with Garlic Recipe

Pat LaFrieda’s first introduction to the meat world was in the summer of 1981, when he was just ten years old and learning the tricks of the trade at his father’s butchering business. Thirty years later, Pat, his father, and cousin own and operate New York City’s most prestigious and valued meatpacking facility. Pat LaFrieda Meat Purveyors supplies the finest restaurants in New York City, Philadelphia, DC, Las Vegas, Miami, Chicago, and more. They also operate four retail locations at Citi Field—home to the New York Mets—including two Pat LaFrieda Original Steak Sandwich stands, a LaFrieda Meatball Slider stand, and the sit-down restaurant, Pat LaFrieda Chop House. In 2014 they became the "Official Burger of the Mets."

How to Keep a Clear, Focused Mind when You’re Freaking Out

Tracy Alloway, PhD, is Professor of Psychology at the University of North Florida. Formerly, she was the Director of the Center for Memory and Learning in the Lifespan. She is an expert on working memory and education, and developed the internationally recognized Alloway Working Memory Assessment. She writes a blog for Psychology Today. Together with Ross Alloway, Tracy edited an academic book on working memory (Psychology Press) and has published research on working memory in a variety of contexts, from education to aging, from happiness to lying, from barefoot running to Facebook. Their research has been featured on the BBC, ABC News, Huffington Post, Salon, The Washington Post, and Newsweek. They have lived in El Salvador, Scotland, and currently live in Jacksonville, Florida.

PrincessBrideKiss400

Skinnygirl Cocktails Recipe: Pretty Pear

Bethenny Frankel is the four-time bestselling author of Skinnydipping, A Place of Yes, Naturally Thin, and The Skinnygirl Dish. She is the creator of the Skinnygirl brand—which extends to cocktails, fitness, and health—and currently stars as the host of her own talk show, Bethenny. She has been named one of the Top 100 Most Powerful Celebrities by Forbes magazine and is regularly featured in both Health magazine and Glamour. She is a graduate of the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts. Bethenny lives in New York with her daughter, Bryn, and dog, Cookie.

More Stories >

Debugging information below
(This will not show up in Production)

Total Queries ran on page 54
Time Query
Time Query
0.00068306922912598 SELECT ID, post_name, post_parent, post_type FROM wp_posts WHERE post_name IN ('love-and-relationships','why-its-ok-to-keep-score-with-your-spouse') AND post_type IN ('page','attachment')
0.00046896934509277 SELECT wp_posts.* FROM wp_posts WHERE 1=1 AND wp_posts.post_name = 'why-its-ok-to-keep-score-with-your-spouse' AND wp_posts.post_type = 'post' ORDER BY wp_posts.post_date DESC
0.00055599212646484 SELECT post_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_postmeta WHERE post_id IN (3621) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
0.00046110153198242 SELECT tr.term_taxonomy_id FROM wp_term_relationships AS tr INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tr.object_id IN (3621) AND tt.taxonomy IN ('category') ORDER BY tr.term_taxonomy_id ASC
0.00023794174194336 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 3621 LIMIT 1
0.00086593627929688 SELECT t.*, tt.* FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('category') AND tr.object_id IN (3621) ORDER BY t.name ASC
5.8889389038086E-5 SELECT term_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_termmeta WHERE term_id IN (6) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
6.7949295043945E-5 SELECT * FROM wp_users WHERE ID = '144'
6.7949295043945E-5 SELECT user_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_usermeta WHERE user_id IN (144) ORDER BY umeta_id ASC
0.0010659694671631 SELECT t.*, tt.* FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('post_tag') AND tr.object_id IN (3621) ORDER BY t.name ASC
0.00018596649169922 SELECT term_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_termmeta WHERE term_id IN (3723,146,3729,4607,3730,4608,4326,3731,3732,66,2832,2825,3357,63,1328,4606,3726,3724) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
0.00067400932312012 SELECT t.*, tt.* FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('post_format') AND tr.object_id IN (3621) ORDER BY t.name ASC
7.2002410888672E-5 SELECT tr.object_id FROM wp_term_relationships AS tr INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('nav_menu') AND tt.term_id IN ('10280') ORDER BY tr.object_id ASC
9.0122222900391E-5 SELECT wp_posts.* FROM wp_posts WHERE 1=1 AND wp_posts.ID IN (15201,17412,17413,17414,17415,17416,17417,17418,17419,17420,17421,17422,17423,17424,17425) AND wp_posts.post_type = 'nav_menu_item' AND ((wp_posts.post_status = 'publish')) ORDER BY wp_posts.menu_order ASC
7.9154968261719E-5 SELECT wp_posts.* FROM wp_posts WHERE 1=1 AND wp_posts.ID IN (2) AND wp_posts.post_type = 'page' AND ((wp_posts.post_status = 'publish')) ORDER BY wp_posts.post_date DESC
0.00047111511230469 SELECT t.term_id FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('category') AND tr.object_id IN (3621) ORDER BY t.name ASC
6.2942504882812E-5 SELECT tr.object_id FROM wp_term_relationships AS tr INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('nav_menu') AND tt.term_id IN ('10282') ORDER BY tr.object_id ASC
7.3909759521484E-5 SELECT wp_posts.* FROM wp_posts WHERE 1=1 AND wp_posts.ID IN (15204,15205,15206,15207,15208) AND wp_posts.post_type = 'nav_menu_item' AND ((wp_posts.post_status = 'publish')) ORDER BY wp_posts.menu_order ASC
6.2942504882812E-5 SELECT t.term_id FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('category') AND tr.object_id IN (3621) ORDER BY t.name ASC
6.0081481933594E-5 SELECT tr.object_id FROM wp_term_relationships AS tr INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('nav_menu') AND tt.term_id IN ('10282') ORDER BY tr.object_id ASC
7.4148178100586E-5 SELECT wp_posts.* FROM wp_posts WHERE 1=1 AND wp_posts.ID IN (15204,15205,15206,15207,15208) AND wp_posts.post_type = 'nav_menu_item' AND ((wp_posts.post_status = 'publish')) ORDER BY wp_posts.menu_order ASC
7.7962875366211E-5 SELECT t.term_id FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('category') AND tr.object_id IN (3621) ORDER BY t.name ASC
0.00034403800964355 SELECT p.ID FROM wp_posts AS p WHERE p.post_date > '2012-09-19 16:32:56' AND p.post_type = 'post' AND p.post_status = 'publish' ORDER BY p.post_date ASC LIMIT 1
0.00024080276489258 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 3431 LIMIT 1
0.00081396102905273 SELECT t.*, tt.* FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('category') AND tr.object_id IN (3431) ORDER BY t.name ASC
5.9843063354492E-5 SELECT term_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_termmeta WHERE term_id IN (4) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
6.5088272094727E-5 SELECT `post_id` FROM `wp_postmeta` WHERE `meta_key` = 'bk_isbn' AND `meta_value` = '9781439167984';
7.2002410888672E-5 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 7618 LIMIT 1
0.00043606758117676 SELECT post_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_postmeta WHERE post_id IN (20739) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
9.608268737793E-5 SELECT SQL_CALC_FOUND_ROWS wp_posts.ID FROM wp_posts INNER JOIN wp_postmeta ON ( wp_posts.ID = wp_postmeta.post_id ) WHERE 1=1 AND ( ( wp_postmeta.meta_key = 'bk_isbn' AND CAST(wp_postmeta.meta_value AS CHAR) = '9781439167984' ) ) AND wp_posts.post_type = 'book' AND (wp_posts.post_status = 'publish') GROUP BY wp_posts.ID ORDER BY wp_posts.post_date DESC LIMIT 0, 15
8.8930130004883E-5 SELECT FOUND_ROWS()
7.5101852416992E-5 SELECT post_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_postmeta WHERE post_id IN (7618) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
0.0038800239562988 SELECT SQL_CALC_FOUND_ROWS wp_posts.ID FROM wp_posts WHERE 1=1 AND ( wp_posts.post_date >= '2012-01-01 00:00:00' ) AND wp_posts.post_type = 'post' AND (wp_posts.post_status = 'publish') ORDER BY RAND() LIMIT 0, 4
9.1075897216797E-5 SELECT FOUND_ROWS()
0.00036406517028809 SELECT wp_posts.* FROM wp_posts WHERE ID IN (6943,16688,16781)
0.0017321109771729 SELECT t.*, tt.*, tr.object_id FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('category', 'post_tag', 'post_format') AND tr.object_id IN (6943, 16688, 16781) ORDER BY t.name ASC
0.00092887878417969 SELECT post_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_postmeta WHERE post_id IN (6943,16688,16781) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
0.00024700164794922 SELECT * FROM wp_users WHERE ID = '65'
0.00038385391235352 SELECT user_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_usermeta WHERE user_id IN (65) ORDER BY umeta_id ASC
0.00028491020202637 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 7025 LIMIT 1
0.00052809715270996 SELECT post_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_postmeta WHERE post_id IN (7025) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
0.008976936340332 SELECT `post_id` FROM `wp_postmeta` WHERE `meta_key` = 'bk_isbn' AND `meta_value` = '9781451659757';
0.0002448558807373 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 7023 LIMIT 1
8.8930130004883E-5 SELECT t.*, tt.* FROM wp_terms AS t INNER JOIN wp_term_taxonomy AS tt ON tt.term_id = t.term_id INNER JOIN wp_term_relationships AS tr ON tr.term_taxonomy_id = tt.term_taxonomy_id WHERE tt.taxonomy IN ('post_format') AND tr.object_id IN (10228) ORDER BY t.name ASC
8.1062316894531E-5 SELECT `post_id` FROM `wp_postmeta` WHERE `meta_key` = 'bk_isbn' AND `meta_value` = '9781476725994';
0.0002129077911377 SELECT * FROM wp_users WHERE ID = '397'
0.00033903121948242 SELECT user_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_usermeta WHERE user_id IN (397) ORDER BY umeta_id ASC
0.00028681755065918 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 8276 LIMIT 1
0.00053095817565918 SELECT post_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_postmeta WHERE post_id IN (8276) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
0.0086917877197266 SELECT `post_id` FROM `wp_postmeta` WHERE `meta_key` = 'bk_isbn' AND `meta_value` = '9781451650129';
0.00024294853210449 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 17006 LIMIT 1
0.00028014183044434 SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 10681 LIMIT 1
0.0004878044128418 SELECT post_id, meta_key, meta_value FROM wp_postmeta WHERE post_id IN (10681) ORDER BY meta_id ASC
7.9154968261719E-5 SELECT `post_id` FROM `wp_postmeta` WHERE `meta_key` = 'bk_isbn' AND `meta_value` = '9781476773025';
WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 3621
    [post_author] => 144
    [post_date] => 2012-09-19 16:32:56
    [post_date_gmt] => 2012-09-19 20:32:56
    [post_content] => Yes, It's OK to Keep Score with Your SpouseWhen you have little ones at home, even a trip to the grocery store–alone–can seem like a hot night out. Here's why couples will fare better during the stressful baby-raising years if they maturely arrange "trade-offs." From The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together.

Children are adorable, but they’re still frustrating and a ton of work. That often leaves whoever is home dealing with them feeling burdened while the other is out playing, working, or even doing the grocery shopping. Many people go into the baby years insisting they won’t keep score and that "we’re in this together." To that I say, good luck. You’d be better off if you realized that bartering will occur and you will keep score. But don’t see that as a bad thing or as a sign of selfishness. People keep score; it’s simply human nature. It only becomes a problem when people don’t talk about their feelings when they feel the situation is unfair, or when the scorecard is skewed too far in one person’s favor. I want you to have the best parenting experience you can, and in order to do that, you can’t live with blinders on. Scorekeeping and bartering are part of life and relationships. Just do it in a mature and healthy manner.

To an overwhelmed parent, just being in the store with no kids tugging at you can feel like a break. Many husbands don’t realize that while going to the store for your wife is helpful, it often doesn’t score as many points as staying home with the kids and letting her go to the grocery store. Then again, sometimes your wife will want you to do the shopping.

While one spouse is absent, the on-duty spouse usually looks forward to his or her break time and expects to cash in that chip relatively soon. I call these trade-offs. Couples need to discuss exactly what their expectations are regarding break times and what’s considered a break and what isn’t (remember the grocery store example—sometimes it’s a break; other times it’s a chore).

Understanding this is very important. I know many couples where the wife considers her husband’s work hours to be break time, whereas he considers them to be on-duty hours. Equally, I know many husbands who consider their wife’s caretaking hours as break time, which conveniently allows them to assert that they need some break time, too—like a weekend in Vegas with the guys. So make sure you define trade-offs and discuss your expectations. Those who do this honestly and openly fare far better than those who secretly keep score and deny they’re doing it.
    [post_title] => Why It's OK to Keep Score with Your Spouse
    [post_excerpt] => When you have little ones at home, even a trip to the grocery store–alone–can seem like a hot night out. Here's why couples will fare better during the stressful baby-raising years if they maturely arrange "trade-offs." From The 6 Husbands Every Wife Should Have: How Couples Who Change Together Stay Together.
    [post_status] => publish
    [comment_status] => open
    [ping_status] => closed
    [post_password] => 
    [post_name] => why-its-ok-to-keep-score-with-your-spouse
    [to_ping] => 
    [pinged] => 
    [post_modified] => 2014-02-03 12:43:02
    [post_modified_gmt] => 2014-02-03 17:43:02
    [post_content_filtered] => 
    [post_parent] => 0
    [guid] => http://www.tipsonlifeandlove.com/?p=3621
    [menu_order] => 0
    [post_type] => post
    [post_mime_type] => 
    [comment_count] => 1
    [filter] => raw
)