It's no surprise that moms typically bear the brunt of the load when it comes to household chores. It's also no surprise that when household duties are shared between partners, the quality of their relationship increases. However, a study found that not all chores give an equal boost to your romantic life.
According to this study from the Council on Contemporary Families, splitting the after-dinner clean up duties makes women more likely to report high satisfaction, low conflict and better sex with their partner. Who knew doing the dishes could be so hot?
Well actually, it isn't. "Doing dishes is gross," the lead author of the study Dan Carlson said to The Atlantic. "There is old, mouldy food sitting in the sink. If you have kids, there is curdled milk in sippy cups that smells disgusting." On top of that, those gross dishes need to be washed pretty much on a nightly basis (that is, unless you're using disposable dinnerware every meal—which in our current ecological climate, you should probably stop doing). Being the only person in the house to scrub away at those nasty food scraps is a surefire way to build resentment.
As well, the study found that dishes were one of the more commonly shared tasks among couples, so women in homes where the job falls solely on them are less likely to be satisfied with their current situation when they hear from other friends who do share the task.
So if you want give your relationship a boost, consider taking turns dealing with the daily grime—or better yet, tackle the dishes together. Carlson said that the task of doing dishes especially lends itself to teamwork since one person can wash while the other dries and puts dishes away. "My wife and I could take out the trash together, we could clean the toilet together, but that wouldn’t make much sense,” said Carlson. With dishes, it's different. Plus, depending on the size of your kitchen, giving those plates a wash puts you and your partner in close quarters for "us time."
So put on those rubber gloves and get sudsy in the kitchen, and you'll have a greater chance of things getting steamy in the bedroom. Science says so!