Most people in sexual partnerships end up facing the conundrum biologists call “habituation to a stimulus” over time, a growing body of research suggests that heterosexual women, in the aggregate, are likely to face this problem earlier in the relationship than men. And that disparity tends not to even out over time. In general, men can manage wanting what they already have, while women struggle with it.
February 14, 2019
The Bored Sex
[I’d like to see the research on this. I’m a bit skeptical that women are more likely than men to have these feelings. However, I have talked to a number of women who identify with this.
One women asked me to take some sexy pictures of her. It turned out it was for one of her boyfriends. Not her husband. The husband wasn’t supposed to know about them. “How many boyfriends do you have?”, I asked. Her answer was a bit of a surprise to me, “Enough for my own basketball team.”
Another woman was married a couple years to a really nice guy when she started getting “restless”. She felt she just had to have sex with someone other than her husband. She decided there was something wrong with her mate selection and divorced him. She found someone else, thought things were great, then after a couple years the same thing happened. She ended up finding a local sex club that she started attending regularly.
Another woman had been married something like five to seven years and found she could barely stand to have sex with her husband. He was a really nice guy and she liked him a lot, he was good looking, but sex just wasn’t something she wanted to do with him. What about sex in general? Did she have an interest in sex with some other men? Ahh…. yes, she would like to have sex “with like seven guys at the same time”. The last time I talked to her she was meeting a married man several times a week but still had no interest in her husband.
Another woman “stopped counting” after she had 200+ sex partners (both male and female) before she finally “settled down” and got married. After a couple years she was “climbing the walls”. She got her husband to regularly go to a sex club with her and her cravings were brought under control. But her husband didn’t really care for that solution and the last I heard from her there were a lot of compromises on both sides but without either being very happy about the situation.
Those are just the few I can think of off the top of my head. I could go dig through my notes and find many more examples. The point is,I am quite sure what Martin is saying has some truth to it. “Conventional wisdom” on this topic is at least not universally applicable. I’m willing to consider the hypothesis that a significant portion of the female population is content being monogamous but there is a lot of data that says it is not universal and that women who have very ordinary childhoods with no discernible “damage” are not comfortable with monogamy.
See also Sex at Dawn (Sex at Dusk is a counter argument) and Untrue: Why Nearly Everything We Believe About Women, Lust, and Infidelity Is Wrong and How the New Science Can Set Us Free.—Joe]