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Women call the shots, study finds

In most couples, women are the decision-makers.

By Kristin Wong Dec 5, 2012 4:55PM

James Brown told us that it's a man's world, but this study might beg to differ. According to the Pew Research Center, it's women who have the final say on many household decisions.

Photo: Stefanie Sudek-Mensch/Getty ImagesThe organization interviewed over 1,000 adults who were married or living with a partner and asked them who was in charge of making the decisions in four areas of domestic life. For a whopping 43 percent of couples, women are calling the shots. Men make the decisions in only 26 percent of relationships, the study found, while 31 percent of couples say they divide the decisions equally.

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So what are the four areas in which women are wearing the pants?

Weekend plans

For 46 percent of couples, weekend plans are made together. But for those couples in which one partner primarily has control, it's the woman calling the shots. Twenty-eight percent of couples said that the woman decides what to do on weekends, while only 16 percent of couples put the man in charge of those activities.

Major household purchases

Again, nearly half of couples have equal control over the decisions in this area. But in those couples with one person in control, that person is the woman. In 30 percent of couples surveyed, the woman decides on big purchases for the home. That number was 19 percent for men.

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Managing the finances

The study found that women are more likely than men to manage the household finances (38 percent vs. 30 percent). Interestingly, couples are more likely to share decision making about weekend plans than the household budget. Only 28 percent of couples manage the finances together.

Television viewing

And finally, who controls the remote? This is the one area that was the most evenly split, with women deciding what to watch in 27 percent of relationships and men controlling the remote in 26 percent.

Overall, more women (15 percent) than men (9 percent) take the lead in making decisions in three or more of these areas.

What do you think—who calls the shots in your relationship?

Bing: 2012 divorce rate?
Photo: Stefanie Sudek-Mensch/Getty Images

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Dec 5, 2012 8:57PM
Women done realise the power they have.
Dec 5, 2012 8:44PM
After 38 years of marriage my wife told me that she did everything and I did nothing.  Shortly after I starting to be numb in my legs, arms and hands.  12 surgeries later and being unable to work  we have lost the house, the truck, the toy hauler travel trailer, 6 atv's,  three full rooms of furniture.  We now rent in a space that is 1/3 the size of the home we once had.  Seems like I did something.  She made the decisions because I just couldn't do things to her satisfaction and so I gave up and she got to do them HER way.  If I had my way guys would have hookers on the insurance policy and give them the same time off that women get for maternity leave.  Who wants to work 12 to 15 hours a day to provide for 5 kids and all of the things that she wanted and them be devalued like that. 
Dec 5, 2012 8:38PM
That's what's wrong with society today - the pendulum has swung too far towards women and now the world is full of wimpy, undecided guys that lete women run their lives.  Real men won't tolerate a woman like that and are either already married (to old-fashioned women) or alone.  Good job ladies!  Enjoy the wimps you have created!
Dec 5, 2012 8:35PM
well, if there truely is a war on woman as Obama would say, I think they already won.
Dec 5, 2012 8:34PM
If your being dominated by someone else wake-up
Dec 5, 2012 8:30PM
This study is done in the USA ( a completely FEMINIZED country).  Not in the middle East, Asia, South America or most parts of the world.  We all know, the American men is inferior to women and are women's little pets.  Just admit it,  American male are useless bunch of sissy gays without backbones and can't even handle your own women.  Ha ha ha!!
Dec 5, 2012 8:30PM
No wonder marraiges don't last as long as they used to last.
Dec 5, 2012 8:29PM


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