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What turns you on? No, not gifts. Not fancy dinners. Not whispered sweet nothings. Not porn. Not even a really intimate conversation.
Your guy doing the laundry is what gets you in the mood, suggests Sheryl Sandberg in How Men Can Succeed in the Boardroom and the Bedroom for The New York Times. Or doing his fair share of any household chore, for that matter. "Couples who share chores equally have more sex," Sandberg writes. "Choreplay is real."
Putting the groceries away doesn't sound sexy, but research shows that when the guys do their share of the chores, their wives are "happier and less depressed, conflicts are fewer, and divorce rates are lower," writes Sandberg.
When your husband shares the tedious tasks of everyday life with you, you really feel your relationship at work. It's in a mundane way, yes, but in some ways, life's all about the little things.
The next time he empties the dishwasher without being asked, don't let it slip by unnoticed. Acknowledge to yourself the feeling of being unburdened (that's one tedious thing off your to-do list). Experience the feelings of closeness and mutual care-taking. And if so inclined, celebrate it by leading him straight to the bedroom. When you respond that way, we bet you won't have to nag him; he'll memorize his tasks and get right on 'em.
You're at the beginning of your married life together, laying down patterns of behavior. Why not view taking out the trash as relationship-building? Because it is. After all, it can't hurt telling him how sexy he is folding that massive pile of laundry.
Allison Moir-Smith, MA, is a bridal counselor, creator of How Brides-To-Be REALLY Feel videos, and author of Emotionally Engaged: a Bride's Guide to Surviving the "Happiest" Time of Her Life.