In an appearance on Fox News Channel’s “The Kelly File” on Thursday, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, author of “Lean In,” made a plea for Americans to adopt her idea of “choreplay,” which is an idea that I men take up more of the household duties in the name of equality on the “home front,” married couples will have a higher success rate in life.
Transcript as follows:
SHERYL SANDBERG, FACEBOOK COO: So we know that the new IMF report came out if we got women into the work force at the same level of men, our GDP would grow by 5 percent. We haven’t seen that kind of growth for a long time. From an individual man’s perspective, if you work better with half the population, you’re going to outperform your peers, so it’s good for your career. On the home front, couples that share responsibility 50/50 are happier, lower divorce, more sex. Choreplay is real.
KELLY: I love that.
SANDBERG: Choreplay is real. Don’t buy flowers. Do laundry.
KELLY: I think that’s fantastic. I mean, who wouldn’t push for more equality if they know they’re going to have a happier wife, healthier children and more action?
SANDBERG: Absolutely, all across the board.
KELLY: We’ve been selling all wrong in the past.
KELLY: That’s all you need to know, guys, do some laundry. That just makes sense because if you are working all day — because you have studies, you’ve researched the studies and they show while both men and women are working in so many households, the household duties are still overwhelmingly bourn by women. And you know what that leads to? Resentment. And the feeling when you go to bed at night that you don’t want to do one more thing before you go to sleep.
SANDBERG: That’s exactly right, 70 percent of mothers work, and even in households with two working parents women do 30 percent to 40 percent more house work and child care. They have two or three jobs, their husbands have one. For fathers, children at any income level no matter how active a mother is, when fathers are more active, their children are healthier, happier and do better in school and at work. And it’s not what you say. It’s what you do. There’s a new study out by age 14, girls with fathers who do household chores have broader career aspirations than daughters who don’t see their fathers doing anything in the home. So any amount of, darling, you can do anything, is not as good as washing a dish.
KELLY: You talk about raising children in the home and raising the next gender, equality generation. And you talk about chores in the household and how we’re sending messages, sometimes the wrong ones to our kids right now. What?
SANDBERG: That’s right. There is a toddler wage gap in this country. Toddlers. Toddlers. In our homes boys do fewer chores than girls and get paid more. And for any woman who’s in the work force that feels pretty familiar. Our sons take out the trash, doesn’t take that long to take out the trash. Our daughters set the table, takes longer.
KELLY: I never liked taking out the trash. I don’t know if you’re right on this thing. I prefer to set the table. Inside, don’t have to deal with the stinky garbage.
SANDBERG: That was your choice but I bet you didn’t like doing more chores than your brother. Maybe that didn’t happen in your house.
KELLY: But it depends on the family. Joni Ernst of Iowa was telling me — she told the world in a commercial she had to castrate pigs for her allowance.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JONI ERNST: I’m Joni Ernst. I grew up castrating hogs on a farm. When I get to Washington, I’ll know how to cut pork.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KELLY: You say when you go to a restaurant, make your daughter order her own meal. I sometimes confess this even with my own kids, my oldest child who’s a boy, we’re working on shaking hands with people, shake hands and look in the eye. My daughter who is 19 months younger, we have not been doing that as much. I read this and I said why not?
SANDBERG: Most parents by junior high have higher leadership aspirations for their sons than their daughter and they don’t even realize it. Leadership is a skill. And care giving is a skill. So we need to teach our daughters to lead, to look in the eye, to shake hands. And we need to tell our sons, one of our tips, we have tips as part of this campaign that in leanintogether.org, one of our tips is don’t tell your son to man up. Men, strong men, a partnership with the NBA can play the center of a court and they can play sensitive, too. We’ve got LeBron James with a sign all- star dad.
KELLY: That’s awesome. Good for you, Sheryl. It’s been fun to watch and it’s only growing bigger and better. Thank you so much.
SANDBERG: Thank you for having me.
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor