Sex Begins In The Garage

There’s this phrase (and book) floating around: “sex begins in the kitchen.”

…The idea being that husbands can experience higher quantity and quality of sex by actively creating more intimacy in the marriage (with “help around the house” being one of several ways of doing that).

And while I agree with the emphasis on building intimacy (what I call “creating the conditions”), I strongly disagree with the unfortunate kitchen metaphor, because doing feminine chores in hopes it will lead to more and better sex is a fundamentally flawed approach.

DECIDING to “have sex tonight” is a matter of mutual agreement.

Actually WANTING to have that sex is a matter of chemistry.

And while doing feminine chores like washing the dishes, folding the laundry, and vacuuming the carpet may lead to a “let’s have sex tonight” outcome as a show of warm appreciation for your efforts, they will NOT increase the underlying chemistry that drives the kind of hot, panicky sex you both REALLY want.

In fact, it directly undermines it. You become the second wife… the girlfriend coming over to help catch up on the laundry.

On the other hand, when you do masculine chores like splitting the wood, lighting the fire, changing the oil, skinning the deer–anything requiring strength and risk and sweat–you not only gain your wife’s appreciation…

…You also amplify the polarity between you.

Polarity is the “otherness” that creates the animal heat between a man and a woman. It is the sexual pull that is created through opposition, like the pull you get when negatively and positively charged magnets come into contact with each other.

In other words, GOOD sex doesn’t begin in the kitchen: it starts in the garage (or the yard, or the woodshed, or the attic). It starts when you increase the polarity in your marriage by becoming MORE masculine and “other” from your wife. It starts when you do fewer feminine chores and more masculine ones.

Bottom line: the more time you spend in the kitchen, the less you’ll spend in the bedroom.

I’ve long held this view. And apparently, it’s recently received validation in the form of a study that found that husbands who did mostly feminine chores around the house had sex 1.5 times less than those who did primarily masculine chores.

Now, a word to the wise: don’t treat this like some “get out of jail free” card that you pull out whenever your wife asks for help with the dishes (“Sorry Babe, I don’t do that lady chore shit anymore”).

Don’t make any big announcements, either.

Don’t ask for permission or buy-in.

Just do it.

Commit to the shift on your own, and bring it to your marriage quietly, without any fuss or fanfare.

Start gradually displacing the feminine chores with more masculine ones.

Remember, you aren’t bailing on her.

You’re not leaving her alone with the dishes while you sit disengaged on the couch: you’re out in the garage, fixing the tail light on the van. Or you’re in the yard with the chainsaw, cutting of that broken oak branch that’s bending the fence.

Women don’t want to have sex with a man who smells like lotion and dish gloves. Husband or not.

The best cologne in this case is the sweat on your back, the sawdust on your collar, the woodsmoke in your beard.

You may feel there’s no place left in today’s society for your masculinity…

That you have to keep it under wraps…

That your marriage is fated to dull, amicable fucking.

But everything can be reborn.

Everything can be made new.

So put on the Carhartts and get it on.


  1. Great article…being a man doesn’t get your out of work or activity. You step up in your division of labor and make her WANT to have sex. Keep it coming!

  2. I enjoy some of your analogies and passion on the topic. I most effectively build intimacy by focusing on the love languages of my partner. With the power increase of women in recent decades and blurring of roles (in terms of perceived value, earning & responsibility), I think some men in our society are confused about their own masculinity, how to behave, and where to draw lines. Strip all the money, house, and career away from people, and the instinctive sexual roles are still programmed into us; the male is dominant, the female is submissive. The actions each take on a daily basis fortifies our place. Good job, I look forward to reading more.

  3. My wife loves it when i sweat. For some reason the musky man-smell really drives her wild. I think I’ve been in the kitchen way too much…My service pendulum in the more domesticated areas has definitely swung too far. Thanks for putting language to what my wife has been trying to tell me without words. Out to split some wood.


  4. Great article. Any thoughts on the ‘urbanized’ man, living in an apartment for example… who’s list of manly chore opportunities is limited to taking the trash out and carrying groceries up the stairs?

    • Living in a apartment can reduce the amount of things you are responsible for, been there done that. You do have the opertunity to look things up and learn about them, before you have to try to deal with a situation. The internet and YouTube can be a great tool to learn things, wish they were around when I was learning what I know now. Start with the most common things, changing a tire, jump starting a car, what ever comes to mind. I do not know what you already know so suggestions are limited. Most importantly, learn things so you can be of service to people where you are. Knowledge is power and women like that.

  5. You’re entitled to your opinion about what makes sex great and what defines masculinity and femininity. I look at chores differently, due to life experience and my work.

    I help around the house in both the kitchen and the garage. My wife is just as turned on by the cakes I bake as the truck and plumbing repair. The biggest factor isn’t how sis-gender my chores are — it’s how much I’m paying attention to her needs and the needs of the home. Great sex comes from the quality of the CONNECTION — how much of a SERVANT and passionate lover I am.

    I work as a couples counselor. [For 15 years I was a building contractor, in case that gives me more cred]. My experience tells me that the “masculinity” or “femininity” of chores have VERY little to do with sexual chemistry. It’s the spirit in which he does them. I have clients with grease and dirt under their fingernails. If they don’t pay attention to the needs at home, don’t cherish their wife, listen, and take care of them, it doesn’t matter WHAT they smell like. Let’s not substitute style for substance.

  6. I agree with Alan on a lot of what he said. Intention has a lot to do with what you are doing and how it will be perceived. My wife gets excited when I cook dinner, or she comes home and I am washing dishes and doing laundry. She also gets excited when I till the garden, change the clutch on my truck, fix the electrical or plumbing problem we are having and what ever else comes up. She knows she can depend on me. I am there for her and she is there for me. She is no slacker, she cooks and cleans and has a job. Wish she didn’t have to work, but that is life today, at least for now. If you do not know anything about plumbing, electrical, auto mechanics, carpentry or any other perceived manly skills, look it up on the internet. Believe it or not most of it is not that hard. sometimes there are a few tricks, electrical stuff be very careful with, but it is not rocket science.

  7. Great article and well put.

  8. Absolutely! And remember, you wouldn’t even have to fix the car/plumbing or yard if you could afford to hire it out. Women want, see that word, WANT, a man, see that word, MAN, who can take care of her and the children, “provide and protect” Don’t be afraid to make some more money. Take your family on vacation with you! There is more to work than auto maintenance.

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