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It’s true sex with the same person can become routine after a while, but are women more likely to lose interest in sex over time more than men?
New research conducted at the University of Guelph in Ontario found women experience a decrease in their interest in sex almost incrementally over the history of a relationship.
For the study, sex researchers Sarah Murray and Robin Milhausen surveyed 170 undergraduates of both genders. Each had been in a committed heterosexual relationship somewhere between a month to nine years.
Among the issues they were asked to detail was their level of sexual satisfaction, the level of desire at play and the overall satisfaction they have in their relationship.
“For each additional month women in this study were in a relationship with a partner, their sexual desire decreased by 0.02 on the Female Sexual Function Index,” the authors wrote.
“For each additional month women were in a
relationship, their sexual desire decreased.”
The duration of a relationship proved to be a better predictor of sexual desire in women than even direct sexual satisfaction or overall satisfaction in a relationship.
These results, the authors point out, hold steady over time.
“Some researchers suggest that both men’s and women’s desire would decrease over time as relationships move from passionate love to compassionate love,” Murray said.
She added evolutionary theorists contend that men maintain a perpetually high sex drive while it decreases for women, whose interests often shift to child-rearing.
“The concept of an absolute level of ‘normal’ or ‘low’ sexual desire is being replaced by the view that low sexual desire is relative to one’s partner’s level of desire,” Murray said.
Murray and Milhausen said more research is needed, but they hope it can help women and doctors to better understand this decreasing level of desire.