By Yvonne Fulbright
Want to get her all hot n’ bothered? Do housework. Research by psychologist John Gottman shows that men who help out around the house have happier sex lives and better marriages.
While it’s hard to imagine that you can mop and wash your way to hotter sex, it seems like a piece of cake when cleaning is turned into sex play.
While men have, in recent years, gotten better about helping out around the house, taking care of the home is still very much the woman’s job, in addition to her daytime job. A recent report released by a European Commission found that, on average, a woman in the European Union with a paid job spent 25.5 hours per week doing domestic and family work, while men devoted 7.8 hours weekly to such.
Such a workload discrepancy can have major consequences when it comes to a couple’s sex life and overall relationship. It works greatly to a man's benefit to help out with housework. In his over 30-year career studying why people’s relationships succeed or fail, Gottman has learned that men who pitch-in more frequently have more and a higher quality of sex.
Among the reasons for this:
— Couples spend less time arguing over who is going to do what and when. Instead, they have more time to do “it.”
— A woman interpret a man's willingness to do household chores as him showing how much he cares about her. She likes that he understands his responsibilities.
— His help quiets her mind and allows her to have the clean space to get down ‘n dirty in.
Then there’s the fact that some people need to have an orderly environment to be productive or good at anything. Personally, I can’t tackle a project, let alone think about anything sexy, unless things around me are in order. A fresher environment makes for getting fresh in every way. I know other sexy self-employed women who are with me on this one.
Finally, the great appeal in him doing housework is that every act contributes to a more sex-positive environment, one that’s more sexually inviting. Doing any of the following activities not only makes for a cleaner love nest, but contributes to better sex, with the carnal element being totally up to your level of creativity…
Doing Laundry — People like nothing more than to get their clean sheets dirty. But they must be purified, along with all of your garments, first. Luckily, lovers have long been fascinated with the washing machine’s reputation for rhythmic action. She can be hoisted up on the washer, with the heat soon warming her buttocks, increasing blood flow and sensations to her groin.
Ben wa balls or anal toys are Great when seated like that!
Lovers can let the washer be their guide, making their actions in sync with the washer’s rhythm, getting faster and faster with its motions. Things only get wilder as the spin cycle kicks into high gear…
Washing Dishes — Warm water, bubbly suds, a good scrub — Who says that’s only reserved for bathroom play? Put all four hands to work, suggestively attending to your dishes as you would to each other. Allow yourselves to feel the other’s movements, noting the pressure, rhythm, and artistic movements. Kick things up a notch by hopping up on the sink’s edge and putting its spray nozzle to work. Have fun directing the spray of water at any hot spot you’re willing to expose.
I don't think so. Now I just have all that water to mop up. The rest is okay though.
Dusting — Feather dusters were practically made for foreplay. So make sure you have one for cleaning and another for grazing your lover’s skin every opportunity you get.
Vacuuming — Turning on the vacuum can rev your lover up as well, if done fantasy style. Who hasn’t daydreamed about a hot, naked housekeeper? Become that, vacuuming in your birthday suit, or your sexiest apron.
Straightening Up — “Clean your room” never sounded so good, especially when you’ve got more than one room to christen. In making things spic-and-span, reward each other with anything from a simple to an acrobatic sex act on every cleared space. You may never look at your computer desk, dresser, dining room table… in quite the same way.
Scrubbing the Tub — Wrap up your efforts in making your bathtub sparkling clean. Then reward yourselves with a nice soak, made even better with some sensual massage.
Turning cleaning into opportunities for foreplay can have couples looking forward to housework.
It can also boost their sense of togetherness in becoming a titillating team in their efforts.
Whether you want help with the housework or want to lend a hand, don’t be shy in asking for the help you need. You want to do this directly, but without complaining or pulling a “poor me” routine. Over the years, in being a perfectionist, control-freak with cleaning, I’ve asked to do everything but take out the garbage and scrub the shower.
You do those two things without prompting or complaint, and I’m perfectly happy. Hopefully, your lover is as easy to please.
Dr. Yvonne K. Fulbright is a sex educator, relationship expert, columnist and founder of Sexuality Source Inc. She is the author of several books including, "Touch Me There! A Hands-On Guide to Your Orgasmic Hot Spots."
The cause of all the fuss is that damn Porn For Women book which features clothed men doing housework, combined with captions like “That’s OK honey, I’ll do the dishes.” As I mentioned in this post, it’s become a bestseller, with sales heading for 150,000 copies. The authors have naturally gone into sequel overdrive, producing Porn For New Moms, a 2009 calendar and a book of postcards.
Photos from the first book have apparently been doing the rounds via email, with women cheerily forwarding it on to each other.
The book was a target of feminist criticism by some who said that it recycled stereotypes about women’s sexuality. They did have a point; the book plays on the assumption that women wouldn’t ordinarily be interested or turned on by porn and that all women are obsessed with housework. This is not something that I, as a champion of women’s erotica, welcomed.
Given the book’s popularity, it seems that most women are willing to just enjoy the joke. They find the whole concept very amusing and are happy to share a laugh about it with each other. There’s no concern about the deeper feminist implications.
What it has done, however, is inspire the media to bring up the issue of gender inequality when it comes to housework. Women still do the majority of chores and childminding within the home, even if guys are starting to do their share.
This piece in The Times Online was typical of the sort of articles that have begun to appear on the topic. It quotes an older US study which found that men who do housework are more likely to “get lucky.”
“Equitable sharing of housework is associated with higher levels of marital satisfaction â€“ and sometimes more sex too,” said Joshua Coleman, a psychologist and a senior Fellow at the Council on Contemporary Families, which commissioned the report. “Wives report greater feelings of sexual interest and affection for husbands who participate in housework.”
The term “choreplay” has also found a lot of favour amongst writers. According to the AJC it was coined by Parenting Magazine as a way to describe guys doing housework.
That article does make an excellent point.
But choreplay can also backfire if the deeds are calculated moves to get lucky. Many women are secretly resentful of the prospect of their husband pitching in around the house expecting something in return.
“If that’s the case, he’d be better off with roses,” said Jen Singer, editor of MommaSaid.net. “They act like there should be a parade down Broadway for making the bed. I hear from moms, ‘Of course you should help, it’s your underpants on the floor.’”
So while it’s good that the media is raising awareness about gender equity in the home, the focus on sex isn’t necessarily welcome.
Housework shouldn’t be a bribe for sex. Sex shouldn’t be “payment” for housework. A guy should do housework because it needs to be done. A woman should have sex because she wants to. End of story, thank you very much.
But I guess it will be a long time before that makes headlines.