Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: Fewer Sex Partners Means a Happier Marriage

  1. #1
    6th army lives matter
    Chlodovech's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Last Online
    @
    Ethnicity
    Flemish
    Ancestry
    Frankish
    Country
    Holy Roman Empire Holy Roman Empire
    Gender
    Religion
    Catholic
    Posts
    3,823
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    2,264
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    3,323
    Thanked in
    1,535 Posts

    Fewer Sex Partners Means a Happier Marriage

    By Olga Khazan, from The Atlantic.

    "People who have had sex with fewer people seem to be more satisfied after they tie the knot. Is there hope for promiscuous romantics?

    If you are on the proverbial market, as you rack up phone swipes, first dates, and—likely—new sexual partners, you might start to ask yourself, Is all this dating going to make me happier with whomever I end up with?

    In other words, are you actually getting any closer to finding “the one”? Or are you simply stuck on a hedonic treadmill of potential lovers, doomed like some sort of sexual Sisyphus to be perpetually close to finding your soul mate, only to realize—far, far too late—that they are deal-breakingly disappointing?

    Well, sociology has some unfortunate news!

    Over at the Institute for Family Studies, Nicholas Wolfinger, a sociologist at the University of Utah, has found that Americans who have only ever slept with their spouses are most likely to report being in a “very happy” marriage. Meanwhile, the lowest odds of marital happiness—about 13 percentage points lower than the one-partner women—belong to women who have had six to 10 sexual partners in their lives. For men, there’s still a dip in marital satisfaction after one partner, but it’s never as low as it gets for women, as Wolfinger’s graph shows:



    “Contrary to conventional wisdom, when it comes to sex, less experience is better, at least for the marriage,” said W. Bradford Wilcox, a sociologist and senior fellow at the Institute for Family Studies (and an Atlantic contributor). In an earlier analysis, Wolfinger found that women with zero or one previous sex partners before marriage were also least likely to divorce, while those with 10 or more were most likely. These divorce-proof brides are an exclusive crew: By the 2010s, he writes, just 5 percent of new brides were virgins. And just 6 percent of their marriages dissolved within five years, compared with 20 percent for most people.

    Other studies’ findings have also supported the surprising durability of marriages between people who have only ever had sex with one another.

    In this latest study, women who have had one partner instead of two are about 5 percentage points happier in their marriages, about on a par, Wolfinger says, with the boost that possessing a four-year degree, attending religious services, or having an income over $78,000 a year has for a happy marriage. (In his analysis, he controlled for education, income, and age at marriage.)

    This analysis merely suggests that sleeping with fewer people is correlated with marital happiness; it doesn’t say one thing predicts the other. Even people who have slept with the entire Polyphonic Spree could go on to live in blissful matrimony. Moreover, this analysis is not peer-reviewed; it’s just a blog post. And Wolfinger acknowledges that, because of a quirk in how the survey was worded, some of the people reporting one partner might have meant “one partner besides my spouse.”



    Still, researchers I spoke with speculated about a few reasons that sexually inexperienced marriages seem so solid.

    First, Wolfinger says religiousness doesn’t explain the difference between the happy virgins and the less-happy everyone else. But it could be something more subtle: People who avoid sex before marriage might simply value marriage more highly, so they feel more satisfied by it. Contrary to what pop culture might have you believe, Americans are overall a pretty chaste people. The median American woman born in the 1980s, Wolfinger writes, has had only three sexual partners in her lifetime, and the median man six. So if you have even less sexual experience than that, your significant other might be your dream man simply by virtue of being your spouse.​

    “Those who have never had sex with anyone but their spouse may be the kind of people who value commitment highly,” said Andrew Cherlin, a Johns Hopkins University sociologist. “They have never been interested in sex without commitment, and once married, they may be more committed to their spouses, and therefore happier.”

    At the same time, Cherlin points out, it’s important to remember that the analysis was done based on retrospective reports by older adults. “If we looked at young adults who are just marrying today, the results could be different,” he said.

    The second theory is one I like to call “Not Knowing What You’re Missing.” If you were a virgin (or close to it) before marriage, you might not have had that many relationships to compare your current one with. You don’t get wistful about the hunk who got away, the one whose biggest hobbies were vegan cooking and reading novels with strong female protagonists. You are happy with whomever you ended up with, love handles and all. Maybe it’s no wonder, as Wolfinger writes, that divorce rates are higher when there are more single people in a given geographic area.

    It could be that, Wilcox told me, “having more partners prior to marriage makes you critically evaluate your spouse in light of previous partners, both sexually and otherwise.”

    Third, Wolfinger says, this trend “could reflect personality types that are less conducive to having a happy marriage.” To put that more gently, some people just aren’t the marrying kind. And they might be the types of people who play the field a lot before marriage.

    Or, as the University of Maryland sociologist Philip Cohen puts it, “you could have a lot of sexual partners not because you’re good at sex, but because you’re bad at relationships.”

    Cohen also pointed out that it’s impossible to disentangle the promiscuous chicken and the unhappy egg here. Wolfinger’s analysis, he said, could simply be capturing people who are in unhappy marriages, so they’re cheating. Their two sexual partners aren’t necessarily past college girlfriends; they could be current mistresses.

    Finally, there are all sorts of other, hidden possibilities that might exonerate people who sow their wild oats. For example, people who live in communities without very many marriageable partners might end up going through lots of sexual relationships and failing to find one that sticks. Other people, meanwhile, might be forced to have sex when they don’t wish to.

    Also, women who have had previous sexual relationships might be more likely to have had children from those relationships, and according to Wolfinger and others, bringing a child from a previous relationship into a new marriage can be uniquely stressful. These kinds of marriages, they say, tend to have disproportionately high divorce rates.

    In other words, as Cohen put it to me, Wolfinger’s numbers might be correct, but it’s hard to draw straightforward conclusions from them.

    Of course, all these data points might also start to imply that a happy marriage is life’s ultimate goal for everyone, which it might not be. Perhaps all the premarital sex you had was satisfying enough to make up for even the dreariest of unions. Maybe for you, it’s all about the journey, not the destination, bro.

    Either way, it doesn’t seem like all the prenuptial bonking is hurting marriages writ large. In Wolfinger’s study, most people—64 percent—reported having a “very happy” marriage, meaning that for the most part, we still live happily ever after."

    theatlantic.com
    “As brothers and sisters we knew instinctively that if we were going to stand in darkness, best we stand in a darkness we had made ourselves.” - Douglas Coupland

  2. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Chlodovech For This Useful Post:


  3. #2
    Retarded in mysterious ways
    „Friend of Germanics”
    Skadi Funding Member
    Ţoreiđar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Last Online
    5 Minutes Ago @ 04:48 PM
    Ethnicity
    Scandinavian
    Gender
    Posts
    2,798
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    2,901
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    1,939
    Thanked in
    984 Posts
    I find it odd that men seem to rate their marriage higher than women, across the board, despite the popular myth that it is men who are afraid of commitment, and valuing freedom above stability.
    A nation is an organic thing, historically defined.
    A wave of passionate energy which unites past, present and future generations

  4. #3
    Funding Member
    „Friend of Germanics”
    Funding Membership Inactive
    Finnish Swede's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Last Online
    Monday, September 28th, 2020 @ 03:33 PM
    Ethnicity
    Finnish Swede
    Ancestry
    Father: Swedish, Mother Finnish Swede
    Subrace
    Sub-Nordid - Nordid - Baltid mix
    Country
    Sweden Sweden
    State
    Scania Scania
    Gender
    Age
    23
    Zodiac Sign
    Pisces
    Occupation
    Student
    Politics
    No specific ideology
    Religion
    Lutheran
    Posts
    1,999
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    415
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    2,621
    Thanked in
    1,431 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Ţoreiđar View Post
    I find it odd that men seem to rate their marriage higher than women, across the board, despite the popular myth that it is men who are afraid of commitment, and valuing freedom above stability.
    On the other hand ... it is often women who ends up to apply divorces. Maybe that picture indicates that.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to Finnish Swede For This Useful Post:


  6. #4
    Active Funding Member
    „Friend of Germanics”
    Skadi Funding Member
    Idis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Last Online
    @
    Ethnicity
    Anglo-American
    Ancestry
    Dutch, Low German & French
    Country
    United States United States
    Gender
    Age
    32
    Family
    Married parent
    Politics
    Free & Libertarian
    Religion
    Cultural Christian
    Posts
    216
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    150
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    206
    Thanked in
    100 Posts
    Interesting article, I'd tend to agree with this:

    People who avoid sex before marriage might simply value marriage more highly, so they feel more satisfied by it.
    Another possible reason might be those who marry virgins or with lack of extensive sexual experience have less expectations in bed and are unlikely to compare their spouse with their ex/es.

    Not to mention that adopting a sexually promiscuous lifestyle before marriage might set the tone for doing it inside the marriage as well, especially during times of crisis and separation. In my experience also, it's usually people who have had few partners, sexual or otherwise, before marriage whose marriages last longer.

  7. The Following User Says Thank You to Idis For This Useful Post:


Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 1
    Last Post: Monday, October 21st, 2019, 02:59 PM
  2. A Woman’s Body May Incorporate DNA From The Semen Of Casual Sex Partners
    By Nachtengel in forum Men, Women, & Relationships
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: Wednesday, May 30th, 2018, 09:49 AM
  3. Depressed Youth Have More Sex Partners
    By Nachtengel in forum Psychology, Behavior, & Neuroscience
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: Monday, November 23rd, 2009, 04:38 PM
  4. Should Same Sex Marriage Be Legal?
    By Ćmeric in forum Men, Women, & Relationships
    Replies: 230
    Last Post: Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009, 09:58 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •