The Sex Drives of Men and Women

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March 27th, 2013

An exhaustive review of studies on sexuality published from the 1960s to 2000, asserted in every sex-drive-related metric, men demonstrated stronger urges than women, according to Discovery’s How Things Work.

Psychologists from a Case Western Reserve University review emphasized the male sex drive doesn’t just represent a moment of time. Rather it spans age groups, marital status and sexuality.

Roy Baumeister, a Florida State University social psychologist, wrote WebMD, found that men reported more spontaneous sexual arousal and had more frequent and varied sexual fantasies.

Masturbation is considered by sex researchers to be one of the purest measures of sex drive, because it isn’t constrained by external factors such pregnancy or disease, said PsychologyToday.com.

Discovery wrote that 94.6 percent of males 25 to 29 masturbate. For women it’s 84.6 percent.

PsychologyToday.com wrote that men initiate sex often and rarely refuse it. Women initiate it much more rarely and refuse it more often than men.

Women don’t always seem to know what turns them on, reported WebMD.

Northwestern University researcher Meredith Chivers and colleagues showed erotic films to gay and straight men and women. Then they asked about the participant’s level of sexual arousal, and measured actual levels of arousal through devices attached to their genitals.

Women exhibited more heightened responses across the board, regardless of their sexual identification, said Discovery. Males, on the other hand, were titillated according to their self-identified sexual preferences.

It seems that men have every incentive to have sex passed along in their genes, wrote WebMD. In contrast, women may be hard-wired to carefully choose their partners, because they can get pregnant.

They are also likely to be more attuned to relationship quality because they want a partner who will stay around to take care of and support the child.

Age can also play a role in female sex drive. In an issue of Personality and Individual Differences University of Texas psychologist David Buss wrote that women in their 30s and early 40s are significantly more sexual than younger women, wrote Time.com.

Women aged 27 through 45 report having more sexual fantasies and more sex than women aged 18 through 26.

Columbia University’s Go Ask Alice column said that another factor is hormone level changes that women experience at different points in their lives.

For both sexes, testosterone levels drop as they get older. The decrease happens more slowly in women than in men, which may mean an older woman desires sex more than some of her male peers.

Women find it easier than men to go without sex. PsychologyToday.com wrote that an adult woman who is between relationships can easily long periods of time, hardly thinking about sex and not minding going without sex. That varies on an individual basis.

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