Match.com's Singles in America study, now in its fourth year, examines the attitudes and behaviors of over 5,300 American singles from all walks of life in order to get a glimpse into how love and relationships are viewed today.
"U.S. singles most often have sex at night, don't want to know their partner's sexual history, have trouble deciding when to have sex with a new dating partner, and overall just want more sex," says Dr. Justin R. Garcia, PhD., Scientific Advisor at Match.com. "But why?"
That's the million-dollar question, one of the many questions Match.com tried to answer in the latest Singles in America study. A survey of what it means to be single would be incomplete without an examination of what it means to be single and sexual, because whether you're a new couple or have been married for half a century, sex is an important ingredient in almost every romantic relationship.
Research has shown that sexual satisfaction influences a huge range of outcomes, from one's happiness, to one's health, to the likelihood of a breakup. So what's the state of sexuality in America today? Match.com says:
- Singles want more sex. We probably didn't need a study to tell us that, but we got one anyway. 68% of single men and 57% of single women say they want more sex in 2014, although it may still be less sex than you're expecting. Most singles ideally would like to have sex 2 to 3 times per week - only 15% of single men 12% of single women would ideally have sex every day.
- We are all really confused about when we "should" have sex. Everyone is stressed out about when to take a new relationship to the next step. Nearly half of singles think it's only okay to have sex with a new partner once they've reached the 6th date. Men, on average, tend to count the number of dates (and observe totally idiosyncratic rules about which number it's appropriate to have sex on). Women, on the other hand, tend to rely on relationship milestones - such as a clear sign of commitment or exclusivity - to mark when it's okay to make things sexual.
- Some of us are keeping our number under wraps, but it's fewer than you might expect. 21% of women and 23% of men admit to altering their number of sexual partners (in either direction) when asked about it. Nearly half singles of both genders simply say they've don't want to know their partner's sexual history at all.
- Television is totally killing the vibe. 77% of men and 82% of women consider the TV a huge turn-off. In fact, it's the #2 sexual turn-off for women and the #1 sexual turn-off for men. Why? Because TV is hugely distracting, and satisfying sex doesn't happen when your attention is focused elsewhere.