Billionaire and philanthropist Bill Gates’ wife Melinda Gates knows what it takes to keep the wheels to successful life spinning and a successful marriage going. Married for over 25 years, the Gates couple, despite having a plate full of things such as dedicating their lives to reducing poverty and improving education and health care singles out a trivial thing in a marriage which married couples thinks unimportant. Talking about the key to success of their marriage, Melinda in a recent interview with Business Insider revealed the keys to her long, successful marriage to the Microsoft co-founder: sharing household responsibilities.
“So one night we stood up after dinner and people in the family started to melt away, like, off they go upstairs. So hand on my hips, I’m, like, ‘Nobody leaves the kitchen until I leave the kitchen!’” she said. “What happens is that last 15 minutes gets divvied up really fast. And then five minutes later we all go upstairs. So I think we just have to sometimes name these extra invisible things that people don’t even see that we do as women’’ Melinda tells the daily.
In her new book, The Moment of Lift, Melinda Gates, among many other fascinating points, reminds us of the importance of a ‘successful marriage’ as a foundation for success in so many other ways. She dives into what she and Bill have adopted as an important symbol of the strongest marriages besides also writing strongly about how so much of the ‘unpaid’ household chores like cooking, folding laundry, organizing childcare, scheduling dentist appointments are designated as a women’s task adding that all the unpaid labour adds up to seven years of work, something she or any other woman could use to go pursue a PhD.
She further posts a very important question about how much women can accomplish with the extra time if male partners stepped up more.
Melinda and Bill Gates met in 1987 when Melinda joined Microsoft as a product manager. They then went on to marry in 1994 in Hawaii and share three children together.