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When asked who is responsible for taking care of the Christmas tasks – almost every time the woman of the family say they do the work.

With only three shopping days left before Christmas, there’s a lot to get done. But who does it all, and do men do their fair share?

New research finds that women are bearing much of the work this Christmas – much more than men.

Those who are married or single but living with a partner are asked, firstly, who is mainly responsible for a series of Christmas tasks. In every case except one (doing the washing up), more women say they are responsible for the work than do men.

69% of women say they send out the Christmas cards, while only 12% of men say the same. Buying the presents is split female to male by 61%-8%; doing the food shopping by 54%-13%; and cooking the Christmas dinner by 51%-17%.

Christmas housework

If everyone was telling the truth, the percentage of people saying their partner does the work would be the same as the percentage of partners saying they do the work themselves. This is not the case, however: much of the time men are less likely to say their partner does the work than women are to say that they do it themselves, and more likely to say they spread it out evenly between them.

Couples are also asked who drinks the most (39% of men say they do, compared to only 14% of women) and who falls asleep first on the day itself (38% of men, 13% of women).

Chrstmas moments

Men only seem more altruistic when it comes to presents: 34% of men say their partner gets the most expensive presents compared to only 9% of women, and 28% of men say their partner gets the most presents compared to 5% of women.

Some have complained that it is the media that perpetuates the idea that women should do all the work. Last Christmas 600 people complained that a festive TV campaign was sexist. The advert showed a harassed mother swamped with festive preparations, and ended with the line “Behind every great Christmas there’s mum”.


Most Americans believe there is a ‘war on Christmas’ going on.

In less than a week’s time, Americans all over the country will celebrate Christmas day. Though the exact meaning of Christmas has long been controversial, the modern debate over a war on Christmas began in 2004 when Bill O’Reilly presented a show on Fox News focusing on the increasingly secular nature of Christmas. This year the controversy over Christmas has centred on the efforts of atheist groups to erect ‘Festivus’ poles next to nativity scenes put in place by public authorities.

The latest research from YouGov shows that most Americans (51%) believe that there is a war on Christmas going on, while 32% do not. There is a noticeable partisan divide on this issue, with most Democrats (52%) saying that there is not a war on Christmas and most Independents (60%) and Republicans (70%) saying that there is.

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Traditionally, one of the major aspects of the war on Christmas controversy is the increasingly widespread usage of ‘Happy Holidays’ as a greeting instead of ‘Merry Christmas’. Supporters of ‘Happy Holidays’ have said that it is more inclusive, as it includes other religious holidays, such as Hannukah, which take place towards the end of the year. 72% of Americans prefer to use ‘Merry Christmas’ instead, but support for ‘Happy Holidays’ is highest in the Northeast (31%).

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The display of nativity scenes on public grounds is another major battleground, with secular groups and civil liberties groups supportive of the separation of church and state often seeking to prevent religious displays on public property or, alternatively, fighting to ensure that other religious displays can also be placed on public land. The vast majority of Americans (79%) think that nativity scenes should be allowed to be displayed on public grounds – 3% higher than the proportion of Americans who think that secular holiday scenes should be allowed.