WASHINGTON - AMERICAN men have doubled the amount of housework they do, spend three times more time with their kids than they did 50 years ago, and have happier wives and more solid marriages because of it, a report published on Thursday said.
And by pulling their weight in the dull household chores, they could be enhancing their sex life, a psychologist commented.
'By and large, the more men do around the house, the happier women are,' sociologist Scott Coltrane of the University of California, Riverside, a co-author of the report published in synopsis form on the website of the Council of Contemporary Families (CCF) said.
'When men do more of the housework, women's perceptions of fairness and marital satisfaction rise and the couple experience less marital conflict,' the report says.
The reward for menfolk who help out around the house could be more sex.
'We sociologists generally don't go there, but therapists say there's a direct correlation' between men doing more in the home and the frequency of sex, said Mr Coltrane.
In a comment posted on the CCF website, psychologist Joshua Coleman agreed that sharing the household chores 'is associated with higher levels of marital satisfaction - and sometimes more sex, too!'
'Wives report greater feelings of sexual interest and affection for husbands who participate in housework,' Mr Coleman, who is a senior fellow at the CCF, said.
Then again, he said, spending more time with the kids might not have the desired impact on a couple's intimate relationship.
'The increase in parenting hours on the part of both husbands and wives may pose some threats to the couple relationship since many couples have increased their time with their children by eliminating or greatly reducing time for romance,' Mr Coleman wrote.
The report is to be presented in full at the CCF's annual conference next month, in Chicago. -- AFP