Bedroom Insider

A blog about relationships, intimacy and sex toys.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

How Often Do People Normally Have Sex, Pt 1 - Sex Statistics

 Attractive couple sharing intimate moments in bedroom

Here's a question that sex educators often get: How often do people normally have sex? Of course, they might hear other variations, but the inquiry is always about frequency and normalcy. It's pretty common to wonder how often other people have sex, especially when you cannot see into their bedrooms.

Sex Survey Says..

The National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior is among the largest sexual studies ever performed. In 2010, researchers from the University of Indiana polled 5,865 adults about their sexual behavior. This gives us some great insight into how often people have sex.

Let's start with women. These numbers apply to married women specifically.

  • Women between 18-24 are the most likely to have sex 2-3 times per week (35.3%), followed next by women who have sex four or more times weekly (23.5).
  • This shifts for women in their mid to late-twenties: 47.7% have sex a few times to month per weekly.
  • Over half of women in their thirties (50.2%) have sex several times per month.
  • That number slips for women in their forties (46.6%) but still remains the most common sexual frequency.
  • Over one-third (36.2%) of women in their fifties have sex more than once per month. At this point, women are about equally as likely to not have sex in the last year (22%) as there are to have sex a few times per year (23.7%).
  • By the time her sixties roll around, a woman is about equally as likely to have sex a few times per month (25.9%) as she is to not have had sex in the past year (37.9%). 
  • Over half of all women in their 70s (53.5%) haven't had sex in the past year while a quarter have sex just a few times a year.

How does this look for men who are married?

There is no age group in which more men report having sex four or more times per week than other frequencies. Younger married men have sex more frequently than their female counterparts, and fewer men report having no sex in the past year for every age group below 70. However, the group sizes between men and women usually differ only by a few percentage points, and the largest groups are the same between men and women.

Another study finds that 18 through 29-year-olds have sex an average 112 times per year. This drops to 86 for the thirties crowd, and 69 times annually for folks in their forties.

You might also be surprised to learn that millennials are having sex less than any generation over the past sixty years. One study looked at Gen Yers born in the 90s and found that they had less sex in their twenties than previous generations. The trend continues for those people who are currently in high school. They're not having as much sex, and they aren't as into dating, either.

Another study found that American adults have less sex overall than they once did. Specifically, comparing rates from 2000 to 2004 and 2010 to 2014 revealed a drop in sex by nine times per year, and it was almost doubled for married couples!

This might look bad for people who are married. After all, married people were having more sex than singles just a few years ago according to the National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior.

Frequency doesn't just differ between the sexes and age groups. Straight couples are more likely to have frequent sex than same-sex couples, especially lesbians who are most likely to say they never, hardly ever or occasionally have sex more than twice per week.

Just in case you were wondering, couples report being happiest when they crawl between the sheets once every week.

What Sex Statistics Tell Us

There are definite trends when it comes to how often people have sex and whether those people are single or in a relationship. The age of that relationship, as well as the age of participants in a relationship, affect this frequency, too. Furthermore, sexual frequency differs between different generations. But there are always outliers.

For example, we now have enough information on people who identify as asexual to include them in such studies. The number of people who report not having sex is on the rise, perhaps as people who feel no desire to have sex finally also feel that it's acceptable to let it be known and (not) act on those desires.

This is one group of people who find solace in not doing what's normal, and there is a lesson to be learned there. You might have less sex than is typical but are completely satisfied by it. You and your spouse may be growing old together after decades of marriage but still have a sizzling sex life. You may finally have discovered your sexuality in your thirties, or you may be in a lesbian couple that has tons of sex. Similarly, you might be a single enjoying tons of casual sex while your married friends are envious.

Perhaps what is most important is accepting where you stand regardless of how normal it is (unless you're experiencing a mismatch in terms of relationship libidos, a topic we'll soon cover). In fact, trying to be normal might only make you miserable!

Of course, you might just be curious how often people have sex, and we hope you learned a bit from the numbers above. However, it's important to take these things with a grain of salt as human sexuality, like anything to deal with people, is complicated.

By: Adriana Ravenlust
Follow on Twitter @adriana_r