"What a good boy you are!"
The score card
Why do some men keep a score card when it comes to helping out around the house and whats up with them needing to be rewarded for these random acts?
Keep in mind I said “some men,” my father once again is exempt from this category as are a few others I’ve had the pleasure of knowing. I’m sure there are plenty of husbands and boyfriends out there who are selfless and enjoy helping out their spouses without the preverbal pat on the head and promises of a sweet reward, however there are so many more of them keeping score.
In my experience, particularly with my ex-husband, he kept score like he was running a “fantasy house keeping” score card. Whenever I became overwhelmed with the daily routines of running our house hold and asked him to pitch in more he would respond with, “ Two weeks ago I washed the floor,” or “ I put the dishes away for you last week! “ “Well aren’t you a good boy! “
Over the course of our marriage his defensive behavior and score keeping became extremely annoying, so I became extremely creative. I explained to him in simple words, my score card would beat his. Men just love competition and placing bets, so we decided to create a score card and hang it on the fridge for one week. Of course there was a reward for the winner, a man won’t participate if there is nothing in it for them. I had so much fun beating him. I kept to my usual routine not adding a single extra chore to increase my score, I did it fair and square. He on the other hand was so busy trying to win that he ran around the house looking for things to do to boost his score. Meanwhile, I was secretly chuckling as to how I got him to chip in more by turning it into a competition without him realizing it.
I know I’m not alone in the art of getting a man to chip in with a promise of a reward, we have all done it. It usually means you have to stay up later than usual and includes wearing something pink and lacy, and men say woman play games? They are the masters, or so they think., I think because most men haven’t grown up at all and have an insatiable need to keep a score card that they can’t do anything without a reward. God forbid you don’t throw yourself at their feet should they pick up their dirty socks without you asking or If you didn’t notice or acknowledge immediately that they took the trash out, they will surely remind you of these random acts the next time you say, “ Honey, I could use some help around here.”
In most households the woman do the brunt of the house work and chores inside and the men do the outdoor things, the lawn, the cars, etc. Us woman don’t run outside and pat them on the head for creating the perfect vertical lines in the grass, nor do men thank us for the perfect creases we ironed onto their pants. However, do we remind them that we weeded the garden and hung pretty wreaths on the front door and seek a reward for it? NO! It’s just a small part of the big picture. We clean the house because we need to, they cut the grass because they need to make sure we know they’re filling a score card, and when they are done, you will reward them by letting them go play a game or watch a game! What good boys they are!
My advice to the woman out there who have a man keeping score, learn how to play the game. Throw them that treat once in a while and create your own score card, you’ll be amazed at how easy it is to get them to chip in more without having to nag and without them ever knowing that you girlfriend, are the master! It’s called “Positive reinforcement,” ladies and it works well with both husbands and children, or that grown child that lives with you, wink, wink.