I’m watching an episode of “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” The subject: married people sex. At one point in the episode, each of the married women on the panel begins to cry, stating she hasn’t had “good” sex in years. This is pre-husband and kids for me so these couples’ issues seem foreign to me. I vow never to be one of those “boring married couples” I saw on the show who has sex, “ONLY once a week!”
Two kids, 14 years and two working parents later, I realize what a heroic effort those Oprah guests made squeezing in a roll in the hay “only” once a week. My house has been chaotic lately. My husband is lucky if I give him a handshake.
So I got to thinking. How often are “normal” married parents doin’ it? Because in all honestly, before all chaos broke loose in my house this fall, the hubs and I were at an A.I.S (average in the sack) of twice a week. We were “the world’s least sexy married couple” having sex “ONLY” twice a week. “Shouldn’t we be having more sex?” we thought. Turns out we were having more sex than most. We just didn’t know it.
I’ve always been afraid of what not having sex can do to a relationship. That’s every married lady’s biggest marriage fear, isn’t it? If he’s not sleeping with me, he must be sleeping with . . . well anyway, I’ve always been a person who likes to keep, what I call, “my numbers up.” I was happy with twice a week, but now I can barely squeeze in twice a month. Is there something wrong with me? Is it really just a busy time in my house or is our “roommate” status a sign of something bigger?
So here’s what true and what isn’t true about married people sex.
1) MARRIED PEOPLE LIE! It seems like everyone’s having more sex than you, but that’s probably not true unless you’re having married people sex less than once a month. According to a 1994 University of Chicago Study, 80% of married couples have sex a few times a month. 32% reported having sex two or three times a week.
2) WHAT’S CONSIDERED A GOOD SEX LIFE? Experts say a healthy sex life is key to sustaining a marriage and keeping a strong connection over time. What’s a good sex life? One that keeps both partners happy.
3) WHY IS SEX SO IMPORTANT TO MEN? This is not to say sex isn’t important to women, but it does seem like most married guys can always find time for a game of groping while their wives put sex somewhere on the list after laundry and before mopping the floor. Why? Experts report that sex is more of an emotional experience for men than for women. Men are more aggressive in their day-to-day lives and sex is a time when men can be more tender and vulnerable. For many men, sex is their primary way of communicating and expressing intimacy.
4) SEX REALLY IS A DRUG. It’s not just a pick up line. Sex really is a drug. When one reaches orgasm, the brain releases oxytocin and vasopressin into the body. Since these two hormones are known as “feel good” hormones, reaching orgasm does feel like a drug. And since men tend to reach orgasm more often and easier than women, the experiences bring a more euphoric state to them making them want it again and again.
5) DOES BAD SEX LIFE = BAD MARRIAGE? No. Not necessarily. However, studies do report that spouses who describe their sex life as satisfying were the least likely to get a divorce. This is not to say couples who were dissatisfied with their sex life all got a divorce. And this is not to say that couples who had a lot of sex never got a divorce. But according to scientific studies, couples who not only had a lot of sex but also had good sex (for both people involved!) were the least likely to end up kaput years later.
6) KIDS = NOT SO GOOD FOR YOUR SEX LIFE. Study after study, women report needing to feel desire before they can find sex satisfying. And let’s face it after you’ve popped a few kids out of your lady-garage and you still haven’t quite lost those last few pounds of kid-gut, you’re probably less likely to be interested in getting jiggy with the hubs. Add to that, a long “To-Do” list of things you must do (like feed and clothes those kiddos), you’re probably not feeling like carving out sexy time. So guys, if you’d simply HELP her with that long to-do list of things she must do, you might be more likely to get some horizontal time with your lady. And your lady might actually want to.
The married people’s sex cheat sheet:
1) Better sex = better marriage.
2) More sex doesn’t = better sex. A desire to please your partner= better sex.
3) Couples who had the best sexual communication fared the best in studies on sex life and divorce rates.
4) When your husband says he “needs” to have sex, he might be telling the truth.
5) Hormones can stunt libido.
6) Some women report an upswing in sexual desire after menopause!
7) Women who felt like they had a partner in parenting and their domestic life were more likely to be interested in sex more often.
8) Having sex 1-2 times per week builds your immune system proving that sex really just may be the best medicine.
9) 30 minutes of sex burns 85 calories.
So if you want to stay thin, healthy and married, turn up the Barry White and start getting busy. Those floors can get mopped another time.