Sharing childcare responsibilities can do your relationship and sex life a whole lot of good, according to a recent study.
If you’ve noticed your sex life suffering after having kids, don’t worry too much—this is totally normal. After all, keeping little human beings alive is exhausting! According to What to Expect, most parents report that finding the time and energy is the challenge when it comes to sex after kids.
So what can parents do to get back in the groove? According to research, the answer lies not within the bedroom, but in how the couple splits childcare duties.
Researchers from the Georgia State University found that couples who split childcare duties tend to be happier with their relationships and have better sex lives. When women did most of the childcare, that really took a toll on the relationship and sex life.
"One of the most important findings is that the only childcare arrangement that appears really problematic for the quality of both a couple's relationship and sex life is when the woman does most or all of the childcare," lead researcher Daniel Carlson said in a statement.
Men who do their part are "more invested"
Curiously, when men do the bulk of childcare responsibilities, it doesn’t have any negative effects on the couple’s relationship. However, men who did most of the childcare reported the lowest satisfaction in their sex lives out of all the men who participated in the survey. Conversely, their female partners were the most satisfied with their sex lives in the study.
But perhaps it isn’t just sharing responsibilities that makes couples more satisfied with their relationships. Sir Cary Cooper, an expert in organizational psychology and health at Manchester Business School, told BBC that the kind of couples who share their responsibilities tend to have a better relationship dynamic to begin with.
"If you have a 'new' man who is happy to share childcare, he probably invests more in the relationship anyway," he explained.
Go to the next page for tips on splitting childcare duties with your partner.