Sexual interest has a sell-by date
FORGET the seven-year itch – researchers claim it takes just a year for women to lose their passion in a relationship.
Their interest in sex tends to die down after a year living with the same partner, according to the largest study of sexual habits in the UK.
After 12 months, sexual apathy among women quadruples, researchers at Southampton University discovered. The feeling, however, is one-sided. Men are interested in sex no matter how long they have been in a relationship. The findings, published in the third National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles, offer stark evidence that men and women view sex in very different ways.
Researchers from Southampton, Glasgow and University College London interviewed 6 669 women and 4 839 men aged between 16 and 74 who reported having at least one sexual partner in the last year. Overall, 34% of women and 15% of men said they lacked interest in sex.
Half of these, 62% women and 53% men, said they were distressed by their lack of interest in sex. And while interest in sex among women declined significantly with age, male sex-drive seemed to fall far more gradually, with men found to stay interested well into their 70s.
The researchers, whose work was published in the medical journal BMJ Open, found that talking openly about sex could help. Those who always found it easy to talk about sex with their partner tended to have a better sex life. This was true for men as well as women.