We all know that physical intimacy is important to maintaining a healthy, happy relationship, and that the absence of sex between romantic partners invariably signals dysfunction and disconnection. In study after study, research shows that the more sex a married couple has, the happier they are, and the less likely they are to consider divorce — underscoring just how important being physically intimate is to keeping the marital bond strong.
So is there an “ideal” or optimal level of sexual activity for couples seeking to keep their relationship on an even keel? What’s “normal” or “average” for most couples, and how does this change as couples age and move through various life changes, like having kids? Are most couples happy with their sex lives?
To answer these questions, I’ve aggregated some of the most recent information and research on sexuality. The findings, as you might suspect, are titillating (cough).
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Parents Work To Keep Things Interesting 1 of 7A 2012 nationally representative study revealed that parents are more likely to have spontaneous sex (54 percent), sex in different places (45 percent), and incorporate a vibrator (34 percent), than couples without children. Who says being married with kids means entering into the sex life doldrums?
Sex Is Important 2 of 7According to the Durex Sexual Wellbeing Global Survey (2010), 60% of those surveyed said sex was a vital part of life. Yet only 44% of those surveyed said they were satisfied with their sex lives as they were.
Women Have Sex For… *Interesting* Reasons 3 of 7Fully 84% of women admitted to having sex with their partner to get them to do housework. Ian Kerner - a sex and relationship expert who worked with Woman's Day on a 2012 survey of sex statistics - commented that "studies have shown that women are more likely to be interested in sex if the house is clean, so this should be motivation enough for men to grab a mop and load the dishwasher." So the barter system seems to be alive and well in many households across the nation.
Frequency Of Sex Wanes With Age 4 of 7According to the Kinsey Institute, Married couples have sex an average of 2.2 times a week by age 30, but only 1 time a week, on average, by age 50.
Quickies Are Common 5 of 7Kinsey also found that, for most of us, duration isn't important, as fully 65% of all marital sex lasts less than 5 minutes. I don't know about you, but I blame the kids. ;)
Sex Is Better With Someone You Love 6 of 7Indiana University's National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior found that the most satisfying sex -- sex which culminates in orgasm -- was more often achieved by men and women when being intimate with a committed romantic partner. So much for the allure of casual sex or "friends with benefits."
Men Are Having More Orgasms Than Women 7 of 7Unsurprisingly - if unfortunately - the same study found that 91% of men reported having an orgasm during their last sexual encounter, as compared to only 64% of women. Perhaps this explains why only 44% of us are satisfied with our sex lives? Just sayin'.
How important do you think sex is to a marriage? Do you agree or disagree with these findings? Let me know in comments!
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