How Often Do Married Couples Have Intercourse?

How Often Do Married Couples Have Sex

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“Love is an ice cream sundae, with all the marvelous coverings. Sex is the cherry on top.” – Jimmy Dean

Sex is perhaps the most pleasurable experience that couples have. It could be the initiating as well as the sustaining factor in a relationship. Regular sex could bring you closer to your spouse, while no sex could widen the gap. So, how frequently should a couple have sex to have a healthy relationship?

MomJunction has an answer to that question and more.

How Often Do Married Couples Make Love?

“There is no magic number when it comes to how often you should have sex with your partner,” Mary Andres, a professor at the University of Southern California, says in her podcast (1).

Though there is no ballpark figure, here’s the average number of times couples of different age groups have sex:

  • Newly-wed couples: They are high on libido and indulge in intercourse almost every day. They have a reason for that given the chemistry they share in the honeymoon phase.
  • Couples in their 30s: With age come responsibilities. The couples in their early 30s tread that path of physical intimacy laden with responsibilities. Couples have sex twice a week.
  • Couples in 40s: They have come a long way in their marital relationship. The relationship is more relaxed now, and appearances do not really matter. Couples value quality over quantity in this stage, which is a great sign of bonding.

Andres says, “Couples should know how often each needs to have sex to be fulfilled in their relationship.

“Some people want to have sex every day, and other people have other priorities, so sex isn’t on the top of their list, so they are having it less.”

The normal amount of sex in a relationship varies from one person to another and depends on a lot of factors, such as age, lifestyle, health, libido, and the quality of your relationship.

Several studies have been done in this area to find out the average frequency of sex required in a week to have a healthy and happy relationship.

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What the studies say:

Study 1:

A study (2) published in the Social Psychological and Personality Science journal in 2015 says, once a week is a good-to-go number. This study, which involved 30,000 people, has found that couples having sex once a week were happy in their relationship. However, the happiness levels did not increase when people had sex more than once a week.

Moreover, it is not known if once-a-week sex makes couples happy or happy couples have sex once a week.

Lead researcher of the study Amy Muise says, “Our findings suggest that it’s important to maintain an intimate connection with your partner, but you don’t need to have sex every day as long as you’re maintaining that connection.”

Study 2:

A study (3) done by a group of researchers at Carnegie Mellon University, has concluded that “more sex doesn’t mean more happiness”.

Scientists at Carnegie Mellon wanted to know the positive association between sex and happiness.

The research covered 128 married people in the age group of 35-65. They were divided into two groups; one group was not given any instructions about the frequency of sex but the other group was asked to double their weekly frequency.

They studied the happiness quotient of the two groups after 90 days, and found that having more sex did not increase the happiness levels; in fact, the increase in frequency has led to the decrease in the enjoyment of sex.

Research also suggests that couples keep their sexual desire alive when they want to fulfill their partner’s needs, even if they have conflicting needs.

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What If You Are The One With High Libido?

One of you has to start the game and let that be you. Do not hesitate to initiate the act but make sure you are bringing your partner into the mood.
According to Ian Kerner, sex therapist and author of She Comes First: The Thinking Man’s Guide To Pleasuring A Woman, both the partners need not be high on sexual desires.

Sometimes you need to kick start it by arousing and building the heat. Kerner says that for many people, the pleasure of sex doesn’t come at the very beginning, but it comes as the couple reaches the middle of the act.

So, arouse your partner by caressing, making out or reading erotic stuff.

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What If You Are The One With Low Libido?

You do not have to worry. Instead, analyze the reasons for your low sex drive — if you have pain during the intercourse, you are bored having it again and again, you want to try something new.

If sex is the last thing on your mind

For couples whose jobs are stressful or who have children are too tired to have sex. But this is when sex can help you. Here are the benefits of having sex:

  • Sex releases endorphins, which make you feel good and increase the intimacy with your partner.
  • Sex helps you relax. If you have a headache or too many negative thoughts, sex redirects the flow of your blood to genitals and helps you relieve your headache and clears your thoughts.

But if your lack of interest in sex is due to hormonal changes or health problems, then you may consult a doctor to address the problem.

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When Should You See A Sex Therapist/ Counselor?

Sex may not be the determining factor in the success of a relationship, but the lack of it or too much of it can definitely cause problems in your relationship. So, taking help from a sex therapist in such situations can help resolve your problem. Here are a few other instances when you might want to see a sex therapist:

  • Your sexual needs are not met by your partner, or you feel dejected
  • There has been a hindrance or long break in your sex life, and you want to rebuild it, but not sure how to do it
  • You want to enhance your sexual experience even when you are happy with your sex life

Tamar Krishnamurti, who was part of the Carnegie Mellon University study, says, “Instead of focusing on increasing sexual frequency to the levels they experienced at the beginning of a relationship, couples may want to work on creating an environment that sparks their desire and makes the sex that they do have even more fun.”

That, in short, means the quality of sex matters more than the number of times you have it. Do not worry if you are not having it frequently (say, once a day or thrice a week). Just make sure that the act is pleasurable to both of you even if you are having it once a week.

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Do you have anything to share about your sex life? Do leave your comments below.

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