Having More Sex Might Make You Less Happy

Study asks couples to ramp it up, gets surprising results
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 8, 2015 3:24 PM CDT
Having More Sex Might Make You Less Happy
A study of sex and happiness had some surprising results.   (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

You've heard the message, seen the magazine covers: Having more sex will make you happier. A new study out of Carnegie Mellon University, however, suggests that the opposite is true, according to a post at Phys.org. In their experiment, researchers asked one group of married couples to have twice as much weekly sex as usual over a three-month period, and they gave no instructions to a second group. All the couples filled out surveys along the way, and, as Bustle notes, "this is where things get weird." Those who had double the amount of sex reported lower levels of sexual enjoyment and happiness at the end of the experiment than they did at the beginning.

The lead researcher is the first to acknowledge that the reason might be because the couples were instructed to have more sex as part of a research experiment, not the most thrilling of circumstances. He elaborates, with some oddly specific advice: "If we ran the study again, and could afford to do it, we would try to encourage subjects into initiating more sex in ways that put them in a sexy frame of mind, perhaps with baby-sitting, hotel rooms, or Egyptian sheets, rather than directing them to do so." Another researcher adds that couples should be less focused on numbers and more on creating the right environment when they do have sex. Or as Wired sums up: "The moral of the story, folks, is that it's all about quality over quantity." (Another study finds that millennials will have fewer sexual partners than their parents.)

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