Sex. It's a conversation topic beloved amongst my comrades on the front line of domestic duty. Or lack of it to be more precise. Once horn-bags, this skulk of foxy ladies now moan about their partner's persistent pestering and wonder, when did we fall out with fornication?
According to the Durex 2001 Global Sexual Wellbeing Survey, married couples have sex 98 times per year. Which means they're doing it almost twice a week. If my local sex survey is anything to go by, those results are seriously flawed. The Durex research also revealed that 10% of people would rather go shopping than have sex. My (unqualified and unverified) study indicates that 98.75% of ladies would rather shop than shag. And certainly nobody is doing it twice a week.
Amongst my lady friends polled, nookie numbers varied. A few have co-ordinated coitus into a scheduled weekly 'sex night' while for others, love making has dwindled to a monthly or even bi-annual event. One couple I know have been out of action for so long they have been officially re-virginised. Unless bonking for baby-making purposes, nearly all of those surveyed require copious quantities of wine and a holiday (preferably somewhere warm and without the kids) to get their juices flowing. So where did we mislay the mojo? And who took the panky out of hanky panky rendering it merely a nose wiping device?
The reasons given for the decline in desire were fairly obvious and universal. Everyone complained that mostly they were just too knackered for nooky. 'By the time I get the kids to bed, I've got about enough energy to knock back a glass of wine and crawl into bed' said F. Many moaned their loss of libido was influenced by their partner's lack of contribution on the domestic front. 'My husband does bugger all around the house' said K. 'Picking his undies up off the floor does not get me in the mood.' Others just don't feel very sexy any more, our bodies broadened and lady bits battered by babies. 'My boobs hang like a pair of deflated footballs and I haven't waxed my bikini line in so long it looks like I've got a mohair rug on my lap' moaned N.*
Sex makes babies. Therefore isn't it ironic (but not in the Alanis Morrissette sense) that kids, the product and embodiment of a couple's love, often become the threat to the very relationship that brought that child into existence, not to mention screw up our sex life. We seem to fall madly and passionately into an all-consuming love affair with our babies and push almost everything else, especially our partners, aside.
My dad, who is a source of great pearls of marital advice such as 'make sure you look after your husband (nudge nudge, wink, wink)', thoughtfully gifted me a book entitled 'Mating in Captivity'. Author Esther Perel, a psychotherapist who specialises in something called 'erotic intelligence', delves deep into the psychology of long-term couplings and how to put the 'x back into sex'. Interestingly, Perel says that scheduling sex is the way to go and wants to debunk the myth of spontaneity. 'I urge my patients not to be spontaneous about sex,' she writes. 'Committed sex is intentional sex.' My friend S, a vocal advocate of the scheduled sex night, agrees. 'If you don't do it regularly, men will start looking for it elsewhere,' she warns.
And according to some, presumably very sexually satisfied, people called Sheri and Bob Stritof, the old adage of 'just do it' is backed up by scientific evidence that frequent sex provides countless health benefits including:
- Improves posture.
- Boosts self esteem.
- Firms tummy and buttocks.
- Offers pain-relief.
- Reduces risk of heart disease.
- Improves fitness.
- Reduces irritability.
- Reduces depression.
- Improves sense of smell.
- Boosts the immune system.
- Improves bladder control.
- Relieves menstrual cramps.
- Improves sleep.
- Improves digestion.
- Improves memory.
How about Wednesdays Mr D?
*N is me.
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