When Romance Dies, Divorce Risks Rise

Do you think it's normal for couples to stop having sex after marriage? I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it isn't. Everyone can go through some temporary droughts, but when the sex dries up studies show it has a direct link to divorce.

The Breakdown

Suzy Godson, The Times sex columnist, conducted a study among couples aged 36-55. According to Godson's findings, 4 percent of couples had sex daily, 44 percent have it weekly, 32 percent have it monthly, 11 percent have it annually, and 9 percent stopped having sex altogether.

If you're never or almost never having sex anymore, you're in the minority. But it gets worse.

The Reality

According to a study by Denise Connelly of Georgia State University, sexless marriages have a higher risk of ending in divorce than marriages in which sex is regular. Even if the couple mutually agreed that they're no longer interested in sex, that lack of making love can take its toll on a marriage.

Another problem is that when a partner with a lower sex drive withholds sex from the partner with a higher sex drive, it’s more likely to lead to extramarital affairs.

Why Sex Matters

Sex plays a major role in relationship satisfaction. Part of it is simple biology: sex gives us physical satisfaction. The chemicals released during sex reduce stress and make us feel good-- which can make us happier people overall and much more pleasant to be around.

Even more important, sex with a spouse is an important part of a relationship. It fosters a deep and lasting intimacy. Making love nurtures your emotional connection with your spouse and keeps you attuned to each other.

If your marriage has been rocky, try upping the lovemaking. If you’re worried it can’t help, think of it this way: it couldn’t hurt.

Photo: Pexels

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