Husbands are a bigger source of stress for wives than their children, scientists say

A study shows that husbands tend to give their wives more stress than the children, and here's how.


Parenthood means lots of responsibilities, duties and busy schedule. It is not easy to be a parent. The family problems, in addition to the jobs we do and the pressure we feel from third parties, may result with having a very stressful and frustrating life.

A recent study has shown that large number of married women find their husbands as bigger source of stress than the kids themselves.

The main reason for such opinion is the husbands’ behaviour. In other words, the wives believe that their husbands act like children even though they are grown up men. Jokingly, some of the participants of the study say that there is not even a difference between the husband and the kids. There may be some truth in it, according to other similar studies conducted in the recent period.

One British study that has been published recently shows that men mature emotionally later than women. The study also shows that men reach their ’emotional maturity’ in their 40s, while women reach it in their 30s. There are some participants’ claims that state men actually never stop being immature.

Every person understands emotional maturity differently. Usually this immaturity includes playing video games, eating a lot of fast food, burping and showing off. Some researchers call this type of behaviour as ‘Peter Pan syndrome’.

Different study – similar results. The source of wives’ stress is pinpointed once again.

Similar to the other studies of this type, half of the women stated that their husbands are the main source of stress. These results may surprise many, since the general opinion is that children are the source of parents’ stress.

One participant said:

“A 7-year-old is going to be a 7-year-old. But a 35-year-old acting like a 7-year-old is more stressful, because they should know better.”

Another participant added:

“Often times it seems like I am the only adult in my house. My husband and daughter compete with me for my attention.”

Besides the sources of stress, the study also focuses on the relationship between the parents and the kids. The results have shown that the fathers usually have a ‘friendly relationship’ with their kids. The fathers usually do not hesitate playing with their kids and engaging in various leisure activities.

On the other hand, the mothers are concerned with more serious activities. The health, education and behaviour are usually the mother’s duties. It is up to her to deal with these crucial aspects of the child’s life. Having this in mind, it is expected women to be more stressed than the men.

Regarding this, one woman says:

“My husband is a really great dad, but I do find marriage to be stressful. I’ve had to put so much energy into my marriage,” one of the responders said.

Communication may be the solution.

The crucial thing in overcoming these stress-related problems is communication. Wife-husband communication and mutual understanding may fix this unbalance and hopefully lower the stress level in the family.

Communication between both parents is very important in solving everyday problems. That way, the duties may be divided and the responsibilities will be taken equally by both of them. If only one parent takes the majority of the responsibilities then the stress in unavoidable.

In addition to that, an attention is paid to the cohesion of the family. In other words, the stress is higher in families where one parent usually forbids everything, while the other allows all of it. Acting in the same way reduces the stress that affects the parents.

Chores – another source of stress.

So far the immature behaviour of the husband has been pointed out as a major source of stress. However, the studies have shown that the unequal split of the chores may also result with some significant stress and frustration.

Unbalanced split of the chores and household tasks usually affects the harmony of the family, especially the husband-wife relationship. This is an additional source of stress, besides the already mentioned, and as such may have some serious consequences. Therefore, having an equal share of responsibilities, duties and chores is the crucial element of the family’s success.

The third factor – ‘time stress’!

Doing things on time, beating the clock and following schedule of duties very often make us stressed and desperate. The time pressure makes us feel frustrated and that may lead to blaming ourselves, or the people around us, for the possible failures. This is a very unpleasant situation for every person and unhealthy environment for the family.

One of the participants, regarding this, adds:

“I feel like I am figuring out a lot about parenting on my own without the input of my husband. This stresses me out because when something goes wrong, it is all my fault,” one of the moms in the research told.

Once again, communicating with your partner may be the key to the success. We all struggle to have the perfect marriage, and this may be the crucial thing in achieving that.