Frequency of Intimate Encounters among American Couples Declines: Study

Frequency of Intimate Encounters among American Couples Declines: Study

Americans are having less number of sexual encounters at 53 times in a year (for 2014) compared to 64 times a year in year 2002. Comparing the numbers to 1990s, the number of intimate encounters in 2014 has reduced by 16 times a year. The study team noticed drop in sexual encounters among all regions, race and across gender. Detailed study results have been published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior.

The study team evaluated data between year 1989 and 2014. The largest drop has been witnessed among individuals with a college degree with a decline of 15 times per year. People living in the South are also having less number (13 times less per year) of intimate encounters.

The decline could be due to decline in number of individuals getting married. Frequency of sex is generally lower among unmarried individuals compared to their married counterparts. The data could be surprising for many as generally people believe that number of casual encounters would have increased with ease of getting in touch with people. Smartphone apps and internet dating has made it easier for people to find individuals interested in intimate encounters.

Compared to 1986 when 66 percent of Americans were living with a partner, only 59 percent live with a partner in 2014.

Pepper Schwartz, a sociology professor at the University of Washington, said, “I would say the number one cause for a lack of sex is fatigue. You have many more women and men working to create a two-income family to stay middle class or above … People’s minds are occupied with things other than the physical connection, and that has increased in modern life, and especially from the ’80s and ’90s and forward.”

The research paper informed, “The decline in sexual frequency thus appears to be rooted in twin trends: Americans with steady partners are both fewer in number and have sex less often.”

A report published in Washington Post informed, “The decline in sexual activity was sharpest among people in their 50s, people with a college degree, people with school-age children, people in the South and those who do not watch pornography. It was less pronounced among younger people, men, nonwhites, people with children under 6, people in the West.”