Even when you’re having fulfilling and regular sex, couples can’t help but wonder, how much is the ‘right’ amount?
Then, when life gets busy, the kid’s schedules take up all your time and work stress creeps in, the amount you’re having can go down. Is it normal? Is everyone in the same boat?
Well, the first rule when it comes to intimacy is that you make up your own rules. There is no ‘right’ amount of sex to have—it’s about what suits you and your partner.
However, science can help to give us some guidelines, or perhaps remind us that it might be time to give our partner a little extra loving when life flies off the handle.
How Often Should Couples Have Sex, According To Science?
Researchers out of the University of Toronto Mississauga actually undertook a study to answer this exact question, surveying data from more than 25,000 Americans, aged between 18 and 89, over 23 years. It’s important to note, the study did not divulge whether those surveyed were in heterosexual relationships.
The sex-to-happiness scale, they found, finds a ‘sweet spot’ at having sex once a week for most couples.
This does not mean all couples need to have sex once a week to be happy, but that on average, that was a helpful guideline for couples.
In fact, their research found that having sex more than once a week did not dramatically improve happiness levels, which stayed roughly the same.
Of course, this may differ between countries. Arguably, the United States of America is not the most sexually liberated country in the world. Still, researchers believe it’s a good base marker.
“This showed a linear association between sex and happiness up to a frequency of once a week, but at higher frequencies there is no longer an association,” lead researcher Amy Muise of the University of Toronto Mississauga told Metro UK.
“Therefore, it is not necessary, on average, for couples to aim to engage in sex as frequently as possible.”
How Much Sex Is Not Enough?
While this study is not new, having been released in 2015, the topic has surfaced again on new platforms such as TikTok, where sexual wellness and wellbeing is a popular topic.
A relationships therapist from the US, Dr Bat Sheva Marcus has gone viral talking about this study.
“Every couple is different,” she said on Tiktok.
“Some couples like having sex three times a week, four times a week.…If you want to know the data, the reality is that at least once a week seems to keep most couples happy.”
However, Marcus says that having sex less than once a week is “when the cracks start to show” in a relationship.
Maybe it’s time to schedule in a racy moment?