Tag Archives: Laundry

Does Equal Work In A Marriage Mean Equal Unhappiness With Sex Life?

Go ahead, guess. I’ll wait.

And while I’m waiting, I’ll just sit here and mope about how science seems to have it out for me in a major way.

No, really. Don’t worry about me. Go ahead.


I don’t know why I try. I really don’t. I mean, come on, dudes and dudettes, I should know better. And so should you. Just look at that stupid headline. Any question that is that specific and is so counter-intuitive . . . The answer has to be yes, even though it goes against the other rule of headline questions.

But, yes, the answer is yes. According to a some interesting new research, couples that come close to doing equal work around the house both report significantly less satisfaction with their sex life than do other couples with less equal shares.

A study called “Egalitarianism, Housework and Sexual Frequency in Marriage,” which appeared in The American Sociological Review last year, surprised many, precisely because it went against the logical assumption that as marriages improve by becoming more equal, the sex in these marriages will improve, too. 

Now, this next part is the bit that killed me. Well, not literally, you understand. I was speaking figuratively. At least, I assume that’s the word. I find that my vocabulary has taken a prodigious hit from all the laundry fumes and accidentally ingested dishwashing soap.

It found that when men did certain kinds of chores around the house, couples had less sex. Specifically, if men did all of what the researchers characterized as feminine chores like folding laundry, cooking or vacuuming — the kinds of things many women say they want their husbands to do — then couples had sex 1.5 fewer times per month than those with husbands who did what were considered masculine chores, like taking out the trash or fixing the car. 

Can it get any worse? That was a rhetorical question. Of course it can get worse. Much, much worse.

It wasn’t just the frequency that was affected, either — at least for the wives. The more traditional the division of labor, meaning the greater the husband’s share of masculine chores compared with feminine ones, the greater his wife’s reported sexual satisfaction.

Just. . . Just let me take a minute here. I’m. . . I need. . . Just a minute.

. . .

Okay. I’m back. Barely holding in the tears and massive waves of self-disgust, but I’m back. Needed to move some wash to the dryer.

Moving on.

I wish.

I need to apply the standard bit of weasel speak here. Truly, correlation does not imply causation. Which means that, just because two things happen closely in time, that doesn’t mean that one thing caused the other thing to happen. And let’s not forget House’s Law: Everybody lies. And people lie about sex even more.

But, good FSM, this doesn’t look good.

Let’s assume here for a minute. Let’s assume that this correlation does, in fact, have some sort of causation. Men doing the traditionally female chores around the house have less sex and satisfy their spouses less than most. It’s a big (although not as big as I once thought) leap, but let’s assume it’s true.

That leaves us with the big question. Why?

Julie Brines, an author of the chores study, proffered this sad supposition. The less gender differentiation there is in the chores, the less sexual desire is generated.

On that sad note, I’m going to leave you for today. It turns out I’ve got a lot more to say about this. Mostly because I’ve been reading books on the subject in preparation for helping a couple of female healthcare professionals write a book on the subject. I’ll probably disqualify myself with this one, but sometimes a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do!


Did you hear that, dear? I’m a manly man! Dear? Honey?

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First-World Problems

by Richard

I’m going to call what I just went through for the last couple of weeks a major first-world problem. All right with you dudes? Sure it is. You know what I’m talking about.

For those of you who don’t, a first-world problem is something that’s really — in the grand scheme of things — only something to worry about because we’ve got so much else buffering us from the harsh realities of life that so many other people have to struggle with every day just to survive. For instance, having your favorite nail polish stop making the color you’ve been using for the last year or so and it was just the right color and now you don’t have anything to match it. Or, the hi-def channels aren’t working and you’ve already got all the beer cooled and the snack foods left out and all the dudes over and the game’s about to start.

These things are annoying, sure. But they’re not something we should be making a big deal over.

Neither, of course, is not having access to your own personal washing machine for more than two weeks. But I still just about had a hissy fit until we got it back, let me tell you.

The washing machine started to go bad a couple of days before the apocalyptic ending in which it spun and shook and spun and shook and made more noise than the last Kiss concert. Although, to be fair, it was slightly more rhythmic. It was toast.

So I called the Sears repairfolk and they sent someone over. He looked it over and said, “Hmmmm.” Then he printed out a receipt, said he had to order some parts and would be back in a week. Before the week was up, I got another call that the parts were backordered and it would be a while longer.

Finally, this week, it got fixed. I just about fell to my knees in thanks.

I’d been having to make these long trips to the local coin laundry, lugging heavy suitcases of clothing along with soap and fabric softener and lots and lots of quarters. Sure it was fun, in that I got to sit there and watch some TV talk to the other folks haunting the waiting area until we heard our ding and all that. The thing is, though, it made it so I couldn’t do anything else but wash. Stuff got put off. Which meant I put off doing the laundry. Until it was a huge mess. Which made it more difficult to do. Which meant I put it off. . .

You get the point. Definitely a first-world problem. At least I had clean clothing, and a place to wash them that wasn’t filled with swimming, eating and pooping fishy creatures. And nothing wanted to eat me while at the watering hole.

Yes, I’m probably spoiled. Just like you dudes, but I gotta tell you, I like it. I like being able to do laundry any time and however much I want.

Thank you Sears repairfolk for finally getting the job done. Now, if you’ll excuse me I have to do go some laundry.

And, of course, I’ve run out of the liquid soap so I’ll have to use that dry powder and it’s all messy and I’ll have to have one of the young dudes vacuum it up. Ugh. It’s just going to be terrible.

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Making Do

by Richard

Life is a bit strange here at Compound de Dude at the moment. Not only are all the young dudes out of the house, but we’re also undergoing a major home renovation.

Which means we’re without an actual kitchen as we get that room expanded, eating up the dining room, and leaving behind enough space for a laundry room. Exciting times, for annoying values of excitement.




So, anyway, there’s the kitchen. Or lack thereof. Not much there other than a cut off bit of countertop, the literal kitchen sink and the garbage disposal. And I mean the actual disposal, not Buzz, the garbage disposal that walks like a dog.

All of which means that making lunch for the wife, known to me as She Who Must Be Fed And Fed Well, much less making dinner is becoming an exercise in frustration.

We’ve moved the microwave, the toaster oven, the toaster, the coffee maker and the shake blender out into the garage and plugged them in, but there’s not much we can make with that.

So we’ve been making do with ordering out, which is getting old. Fortunately, we’re able to make salads so we’re getting greens and that’s good. Although, just now, writing this bit I remembered that we’ve got a slow cooker so that might be a way we can make some actual good dinners that don’t require us to pick up the phone.

Of course, that means we’ll actually have to find some real plates off of which we can eat and that might be a problem, but it’s nothing we can’t surmount.

I hope.

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