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Worth the Work: A new model of equality

Worth the Work · 3 min read

I’ll do my part and you do yours.”

Seems fair, right?

We’ve talked about the 50/50 model before, and how it doesn’t really work when it comes to dividing life admin with your partner. The 50/50 model is flawed because it means subconsciously (or even consciously) measuring each other’s input into the relationship. 

This is especially true when it comes to the effort one puts into the emotional side of a relationship. Maintaining and growing intimacy and love is never a one way street. 

Many couples say that at one point early in their relationship it was apparent that one person had much stronger feelings than the other. That’s normal. The speed at which someone falls in love is relative to who that person is, but how would that feel years into a relationship? 

The effort we put into our relationships should be more than just the practical life admin or daily chores. Everyone wants to be known, pursued, and loved. 

The 50/50 model doesn’t work on the emotional side either. When couples measure input they will inevitably recognise times when it feels like one partner is carrying much more than the other. Within the 50/50 model, appreciation and recognition is usually only given if it is deserved, and if this becomes a pattern the 50/50 model can soon become the nil/​nil model.

Have you ever noticed this in your relationship?

An alternative…

There is an alternative to the 50/50 model. We call it the 100/100 model. In this model each partner is giving 100% regardless of what the other person is giving and without expecting anything in return.

When each person works towards their strengths and tries to be as helpful as they can, you will find that your relationship will become more loving and you will feel more generous towards each other.

There may be seasons when your 100% may feel like less than your partner’s 100%, and that’s okay. Work towards giving your best to your partner every day, and stop measuring each other’s input.

Toucan’s Growing module has an entire section dedicated to the 100/100 model. In it you hear from real couples, with stories that may not be far from your own, about how they have grown together using the 100/100 model.

When things feel unequal, and they will, remember that love doesn’t keep score. 

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” — 1 Corinthians 13:4 – 7


TIP — Toucan Together’s Growing Module sets up some great conversations about strengthening your relationship as a couple. You’ll discover how to grow together through 5 common relationship challenges; explore 5 ingredients for a thriving relationship and find fresh perspectives for marriage (whether you’re married, living together or dating). You’ll also hear some great real stories from couples talking honestly and openly about their relationships. 


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