A comparative study on stress levels among working women and housewives with reference to the state of Kerala




Women play a pivotal role in the decision making process of organisations and within the family. Indian culture bestows on women the role of caretaker of the family. Women are increasingly moving out of their homes and into the work environment. A greater number of women are also entering the workforce of restricted industries. Thus women play the dual role of housewives and working women. A comparative study on the stress levels of women in this dual role of housewife and working woman becomes significant. The study explores the stresses faced by women in society. The result indicates that the financial position of the family makes an impact on the stress levels among both housewives and working women.


A housewife’s main duties are managing the family, caring for and educating her children, cooking and storing food, buying goods, cleaning and maintaining the home, sewing clothes for the family, etc. It is ironical that a woman employed within the home is referred to as a housewife, and outside the home, as a working woman. In both situations, the woman is working but how the woman is referred to, is based on the working place. The duty of the housewife is to take care of the day-to-day chores within the home. A woman who earns salary, wages, or other income through employment, outside the home, is termed as a working woman. With globalization and improvement in education, the literacy rate among women is increasing; this has resulted in more women taking up employment. In India, with women increasingly taking on jobs, the concept of the man being ‘head of the family’ is now changing. Working within and outside the home are the two phases of a woman’s life. Balancing work and family life has become a major issue for women. Dealing with family issues as well as work issues has resulted in women dealing with an increasing amount of stress. This research study attempts to understand the stress among women as a
result of dealing with this dual role.

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