What Does It Take to Lift Your Sex Life to the Next Level?
Tenna Perry, 47, dog breeder and groomer
Dave Perry, 47, scheduler in an electric plant
TENNA: Pregnancy has never been easy for me. With each of my three
kids, I had to go on bed rest. I’ve actually gotten pregnant twice while on the
Pill — both of those pregnancies ended in miscarriage. So during sex, I always
worried about getting pregnant again. When I was pregnant with Will, our
youngest, I thought about getting my tubes tied, but Dave suggested that he get
a vasectomy instead. He said if anyone was going to be in pain, he wanted it to
be him. Dave’s choice was such a powerful statement of love in my eyes. As for
how it changed our sex life? Simple — it made us able to enjoy sex any time,
any place, without worry. And the fact that Dave volunteered for it was a
turn-on too. We’ve been married for more than 20 years and we still enjoy each
other sexually, and never hesitate to show it. My oldest says, "Ugh! Get a
Thembisa Mshaka, 36, copy director, author, and voice-over actor
Anthony Tmor Morris, 36, real estate broker
THEMBISA: Four years ago, my husband and I were on the brink of
divorce. Today, we are beyond happy and can’t keep our hands off each other.
And we owe it all to our state-of-the-art Bosch dishwasher.
Doing the dishes used to be a major source of conflict. Because Tmor is a
food snob, he does all the cooking and won’t allow me to help. While I’ve
always enjoyed his signature gumbo, his intricate salads, his
chicken-and-pineapple surprise, I didn’t enjoy how he’d dirty every pot, bowl,
and measuring cup we owned, then invoke the “cooks don’t clean” rule. I hate
washing dishes. It takes me back to my childhood, when I was the one who had to
clean up after my siblings.
So I’d beg — literally cry — for compromise. We’d agree to split the dishes,
but after about two nights, he’d silently shirk dish duty or flat-out refuse to
participate. We’d have these terrible fights about dishes that bled into other
areas of our relationship — including our sex life. Sex had never been great
for Tmor and me. When we met, I was inexperienced and he’d had many
girlfriends. I was constantly playing catch-up and he was frustrated. The
nightly battle over the dishes made our shaky sexual chemistry nonexistent.
Things came to a head when we moved from California to New York. We had a
three-week standoff where neither of us washed a single dish. Our kitchen was
disgusting, and we ended up having to throw away most of our kitchenware.