Sex Survey: Love's Got a Lot to Do With It

  • Share
  • Read Later
Not tonight dear, I have a headache. According to a major new sex study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on Wednesday, taking a pass at a pass is as American as apple pie. The researchers report that sexual dysfunction, ranging from lack of interest in sex to the inability to have an orgasm, afflicts 43 percent of women and 31 percent of men. "The results of this study are surprising," says TIME medical columnist Christine Gorman, "because there have been a number of studies of married people, for example, that indicate that there is more sex, and more pleasure in sex, than might have been expected." This study, however, highlights the often glossed-over fact that there is much more to sex and love than just biology, says Gorman.

The basic message of the study is simple, says Gorman: "Do not divorce the sex from the relationship." Yes, it is true that some sexual problems are medical. "Men with diabetes, for instance, are more likely to be impotent because of circulation problems," she says. But broader issues in a relationship can have an equally devastating impact on a person's sexual functioning. It is interesting to note, says Gorman, that Viagra ads (two of the authors of this paper worked on the development of Viagra) have focused their pitch on how the product helps nurture a relationship and not on what the product does. That should serve as a helpful guide for most people. "Address your medical problems, but also concentrate on nurturing and building your relationship with your partner," says Gorman.