In Which We Look At A Topic You May Already Have Thought About Today

Who says men aren’t thoughtful? The catch is that a disproportionate amount of their thinking is about sex. In an ABC News Primetime Live poll, conducted by TNS, 70 percent of men (vs. 34 percent of women) said they think about sex every day. The disparity was even more lopsided among those who think about sex several times a day, with 43 percent of men and 13 percent of women saying they do so. Men are also more apt to act on such thoughts, judging by the fact that the survey’s median man has had eight sex partners in his lifetime, vs. three partners for the median woman. Doing their best to skew the averages, 5 percent of the poll’s men claimed to have had 99 or more sex partners; just 1 percent of women said the same. (Cumulatively, the poll’s gender disparities may leave one wondering whether the lads are being strictly truthful about their numerous conquests.)

The survey interrupted Americans’ busy sex lives long enough to pose a long list of questions on the topic. One query elicited the finding that 55 percent of adults see themselves as “sexually traditional,” while 42 percent are (or claim to be) “sexually adventurous.” Overall, 50 percent of respondents said they’re “very satisfied” with their sex lives, and 36 percent rated theirs “very exciting.” The numbers were even higher among respondents under age 30 who are married or otherwise in a committed relationship (very satisfied, 77 percent; very exciting, 55 percent). For people age 30 and up, the figures were below the national average, but not by much (very satisfied, 46 percent; very exciting, 33 percent). Among people in a marriage/committed relationship who termed themselves very satisfied with their sex lives, 90 percent said they’re very satisfied with the relationship overall. The rate of overall satisfaction fell to 71 percent among respondents who said they’re merely “somewhat satisfied” with their sex lives. What of the people who said they’re downright dissatisfied with their sex lives? Fifty-three percent said they’re still very satisfied with the relationship overall.

At the risk of “burying the lede,” we will note that not all sex takes place within marriages and other serious relationships. “Cheaters” do their part to augment the nation’s total sexual activity. Twenty-one percent of men and 11 percent of women said they have cheated on a spouse or serious partner. The figure rises to 42 percent among unmarried men age 30 and older. What leads people to cheat? “Forty-five percent (mostly men) say it was mainly to fulfill a physical desire, while 33 percent (more apt to be women) say it was mainly to fulfill an emotional need.”