Top 3 Reasons To Have More Sex
Sex is seemingly all around us, everywhere we look: it’s on our television sets, all over the internet, in movies, in books and magazines, on the news, in politics. Hearing and reading about it tends to grab our attention; it’s exciting, it’s titillating. But when it comes to having sex in our own relationships, we may be less inclined to engage. There are a number of known barriers that prevent us from having the sex-lives we want—whether it’s a function of there not being enough hours in the day, or difficulty communicating each other’s sexual needs and desires in the relationship. But even without those barriers in place, we all have different drives and motivations for sex.
According to a notable group of psychology researchers in the US, there are upwards of 200 different reasons why Americans choose to have sex in their relationships at any given time: to seek pleasure, reduce stress, to feel attractive, to feel closer to one’s partner, to express appreciation, to prevent a negative outcome—the list goes on. Of course, there are also couples who use it for procreation and family planning. Generally speaking, though, we are living in an age where many of us take great preventive measures to avoid pregnancy. So why is sex so important in our relationships?
It Can Strengthen The bond In Your Relationship
Have you ever felt like engaging in sexual activity with your partner made you feel closer or more intimately connected? It may surprise you to know that the reasons why are scientific. Each time a couple has sex, there are electrical signals fired in the brain that motivate each partner to stay with that person and care for them. Even when we are just sexually aroused or excited, we are more likely to seek compromise and cooperation with our partner and make sacrifices for them. As humans, we are wired to find a life-partner and commit to making the relationship work.
We even know that couples tend to report greater relationship satisfaction after sex. However, there’s a catch. If the motivation for sexual activity is positive (for example, for pleasure, for greater intimacy), you are far more likely to feel more satisfied in your relationship after doing the act. On the other hand, though, if the motivation for sexual activity is to avoid conflict or consequence (for example, to keep a partner interested or stop a fight from escalating), you are more likely to be less satisfied and less committed in the relationship. Actually, so can your partner: Being aware that our partner is just doing it to avoid conflict is—after all—not very sexy. So, while sex can bring us closer to our partner, it only works if you’re doing it for the right reasons.
It Can Protect Your Relationship From Insecurity
Sometimes we feel insecure in our relationships—maybe we’re feeling bad about ourselves, or something at work isn’t going well. Or maybe we’re starting to question whether our partner is truly committed to us. Insecurity can lead us to be more attention-seeking, defensive, or aggressive with our partners—which can lead to real conflict in the relationship. Some people who experience significant anxiety in their close relationships may have what we call an “anxious attachment style.” Attachment styles are developed early in life based on our upbringing and our relationships with the individuals that raised us. Does this sound like it matches you or your partner?
As it turns out, couples who have more satisfying sex tend to report less insecurity in their relationships. Feeling highly intimate with our partners not only makes us feel more satisfied with our partner, it can also make us feel less anxious about the relationship in general.
It’s Good For Your Health
So far, we’ve talked about the benefits for your relationship and intimate connection. But there is a neat little benefit to regular, satisfying sexual activity: it’s actually good for your physical health!
Frequent and satisfying sexual activity can increase the number of antibodies in your body—and since antibodies help prevent infection, that means your immune system functions better. Other health benefits include (but are not limited to) reduced risk of heart disease, improved cognition and memory, lower cholesterol, improvements in sleep, and fewer reports of muscle and joint pain. We’ve even learned that per minute, men tend to burn 4.2 calories while women tend to burn 3.1 calories—that’s a third of what we burn during a 30-minute session on the treadmill!
From these 3 reasons alone, engaging in sexual activity with your partner has some serious benefits. Remember, though, you will only benefit from these effects if the sex is satisfying and initiated for the right reasons; anything that is physically and/or emotionally unpleasant is not going to provide these benefits. Make sure to get to know your needs and practice talking to your partner openly and honestly about them.
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