How Often Are Other People Having Sex?

This post was originally published on April 18, 2014.

Relationship sex can be different than single sex. And having a partner can make us feel safe, scared, sensual, or even (sometimes) a bit bored.

Whether you're one month into a casual relationship or 10 years into a committed one, intimacy is fluid and personal. Our libidos aren't static, and tons of factors, from medications to expectations, affect desire. The important thing to remember is there isn't one "correct" frequency for sex; we're all so different, and our relationships are all so different. What matters is that we're satisfied.

We asked 30 people in relationships to give us the low-down on their sex lives. Read on to find out what they love and what they wish were different.
1 of 30
Relationship length: four months
Sex frequency: five times per week

“It’s new but reaching the comfortable point.”
Advertisement
2 of 30
Relationship length: four years
Sex frequency: twice per week

“I love my partner. I feel 100% comfortable during sex because we know each other so well. I just wish we had more sex! But, we are both so tired after work, it just mutually never happens.”
3 of 30
Relationship length: a year and three months
Sex frequency: twice per week

“I love that we're really comfortable with each other and with initiating sex, but I wish we had sex more often and prioritized it over lounging around and working when we're home.”
4 of 30
Relationship length: 10 years
Sex frequency: twice per week

“I love that we've spent 10 years basically learning to have the best sex either of us has ever had. You can't get there overnight. I wish the baby would sleep past 5 a.m., though. Really puts a damper on late-night sextravaganzas.”
5 of 30
Relationship length: two-and-a-half years
Sex frequency: twice per week

“I love everything about it — we are in sync completely and, even after 2.5 years and living together, it’s been amazing.”
6 of 30
Relationship length: eight years
Sex frequency: once per week

“I wish we weren't so tired (baby, work, etc.) and that we made a greater effort to woo each other.”
Advertisement
7 of 30
Relationship length: six months
Sex frequency: once per week

“When my boyfriend and I first met, we were both living at home, so sex was improbable, though not impossible. We found a few workarounds and eventually landed on a once-a-week pattern. Now, we're both independent, but we've stuck to that schedule mostly out of habit. Let me tell you, it is GREAT. We spend all week teasing each other about the next time we'll be together. By the time we're in the thick of it, we're just quivering with excitement. I guess we just spent so long not being able to have sex that now, fucking really feels like a privilege. We're so lucky to have found each other, and we're lucky that we get the chance to enjoy each other's bodies.”
8 of 30
Relationship length: eight months
Sex frequency: three to four times per week

“I love that our sex life is passionate and has not become routine. We try new things but are never uncomfortable. It doesn't feel like we HAVE to try new things to keep it interesting, but more so like we are exploring. Sometimes, our insecurities play out in the bedroom, though. She's worried about having a flat stomach. I'm worried about size or my masculinity. Accepting ourselves is the hardest part, because we both accept each other, and when our own inability to love ourselves enters the bedroom, it puts an immediate damper on things. I'm just as guilty of it as she is.”
9 of 30
Relationship length: one-and-a-half years
Sex frequency: 12 times per week

“I'm having the best sex of my entire life — it's fun and exciting and changes every time, and he's incredibly giving. That being said, it's the only thing that really works perfectly or easily in our relationship.”
10 of 30
Relationship length: nine-and-a-half years
Sex frequency: three times per week

“We love experimenting and learning new things about each other’s sexual preferences. We have great sex, and my fiancé legitimately cares about giving me pleasure, and I legitimately care about giving him pleasure. We don't always come together, or on the same day, but we enjoy each other every time. He also makes it a point to make me come multiple times in multiple ways when we have sex. Which means we never just have a quickie — it's always an entire evening's worth of activity.

"Sex also makes us more emotionally open: We talk to each other for hours after we have sex about everything — family, work, friends, emotions, the future. We don't see each other very much, but when we do, it's sexy and really fulfilling.

"I wish that I could be more eager and forward about when I'm turned on and be more aggressive. I generally wait for him to initiate, sometimes out of laziness, sometimes because I want to be submissive. But oftentimes, we miss an opportunity because I am too self conscious, or think he's tired, or I'm tired, or worried about waking up for work the next day, and then I regret not making a move.”
11 of 30
Relationship length: three months
Sex frequency: three to five times per week

“I feel so connected to this person, in addition to both of us just really effectively pleasing each other. It's a holistic, full circle, love thing. We trust and enjoy each other, no matter what we're doing. We joke about anal sex, which we haven't had, but we also talk frankly about what we like and want. It feels so safe being together. Everything is good about the sex and the relationship, and there's nothing I would change.”
Advertisement
12 of 30
Relationship length: two years
Sex frequency: two to three times per week

“I really enjoy my sex life, however, I wish we'd have more foreplay.”
13 of 30
Relationship length: two months
Sex frequency: eight times per week

“I love how much I turn him on and how much he is into sex with me. It's taking some time, but he's coming around to being more adventurous.”
14 of 30
Relationship length: three months
Sex frequency: six to eight times per week

“I love that my partner is concerned with my needs during sex. However, I wish he was more interested in when I want to have sex, rather than feeling like we kind of have to.”
15 of 30
Relationship length: 14 years
Sex frequency: 10 times per week

“We're very progressive — we just started having an open relationship so we can both sleep with other women. So far, it has put our sex life into overdrive — we can't get enough of each other. I do wish we could explore a bit more of a dominant/submissive angle, but I don't think my S.O. is quite there yet.”
16 of 30
Relationship length: seven years
Sex frequency: twice per week

“I love that it's always good. I wish we could have sex on weekdays more, but weekends just end up being easier with our work schedules!”
Advertisement
17 of 30
Relationship length: 19 years
Sex frequency: once per week

“I enjoy total trust and comfort with my wife, but would prefer sex slightly more often — maybe twice a week.”
18 of 30
Relationship length: three-and-a-half years
Sex frequency: once per week

"In the beginning of our relationship, my then-girlfriend and I had sex ALL. THE. TIME. Like, more than once a day. After a few months, we calmed down, and have never gotten back to that place of urgency. I'm not thrilled about it. I'd love to be having more sex.We frequently try new things — toys, positions, etc. — but usually revert back to the same routine after a little bit. When you find something that works for both of you, it's hard to be motivated to commit to something else."
19 of 30
Relationship length: eight years
Sex frequency: once per week

"My husband and I waited until we were married to have intercourse (we did other things while we were dating). We also didn't live together before we were married. So, we used to fool around almost every time we saw each other.

Honestly, our sex life is not fantastic. My husband and I are both extremely busy and work opposite schedules. The stress plus the lack of physical time together means that we're really only able to get it on once on the weekend.

We don't really experiment in the bedroom. I did pull out the vibrator the other day, which was nice. I've told my partner that I want to try watching porn together, and he says that he's okay with it, but somehow he seems hesitant, so we haven't tried it. The best thing for us is actually hotel sex, even if it's a 'staycation' — because that seems to be the only way we can truly detach from chores and all of the distractions at home."
20 of 30
Relationship length: three years
Sex frequency: once per month

“Our relationship has had its ups and downs. We’ve had a more open situation, we’ve broken up, we’ve gotten back together, I've experimented with dating women and men. At first, we were really into kink and bondage, toys, role-playing, crazy latex, watching porn together — the whole nine yards. But, one day, it just kinda...halted.

It’s only been recently that our sex life has slowed to a trickle and it makes me really sad. I just don’t feel a huge impulse to have sex with him anymore. I think about having sex with other people sometimes, and I might do that. I kind of cheated on him recently. But it’s tough because I really love my partner. Our sexual fire is just gone at the moment. I think only time will tell if it will come back — or if we’ll both need to move in search of more compatible sexual partners.”
21 of 30
Relationship length: four months
Sex frequency: three times per week

“I am super-happy in my relationship. I didn't foresee myself at almost 30, starting to date a woman for the first time, but I am completely happy with the situation and growing to be more comfortable, open, and satisfied everyday.

However, I do feel bored while having sex sometimes. This is my first intimate relationship with a female, and lesbian sex is a long process. It lasts at least an hour, but usually two to three, and honestly, yeah, I get a little bored sometimes. I am used to sleeping with guys, which can be long, too — but, it was usually a quick-and-hot session that was over the minute he came (with no worry about whether or not I had finished).

The amount of sex we’re having has changed from the start of the relationship. In the beginning, it was me being shy and her doing everything to pleasure me because I had NO idea what I was doing. But, now that I have become more adventurous and comfortable with my actions — and with 'carrying my weight' in the bedroom — I am so into it and want to pleasure her all the time.”
Advertisement
22 of 30
Relationship length: five years
Sex frequency: three to four times per week

“I generally feel bad about our sexual frequency. I am always questioning whether I'm being 'proactive' enough (what a ridiculous business term to use in this context) about initiating sex, or responsive enough during sex, or whether I'm meeting some standard of lustiness. It's weird, because generally speaking, I consider myself to have a pretty high libido. But, when it comes to actual sex with my partner, I feel like it's never enough for him.

He would never, ever pressure me into sex, and the problem is completely inside my head. Whenever I do voice my concerns, he is really supportive and kind, and also a little bewildered. The last time I said something, he said, 'I don't understand how you can still be worried or keep these things from me when we've been intimate with each other for so long.' He's right, and I always feel better once I say something, but I tend to project this image onto him of being dissatisfied with me (even though he doesn't really do anything that suggests that).

We communicate about sex pretty honestly, but not that often. I think we both feel we can bring things up. Sometimes I wish he would tell me more things — but he doesn't seem to have a lot of fantasies. I wish he would tell me what he thinks about when he masturbates, but it has always been really weird for him to talk about, which is unusual. Although, I definitely would NOT tell him my own thoughts…”
23 of 30
Relationship length: four years
Sex frequency: once per week

“I don’t feel like my sexual frequency is enough, but my husband thinks it’s too much. Discussing our sex life is complicated; it's the one subject that can get a little heavy between us. We both agreed to go to sexual therapy in a few months when we are more financially stable. It's complicated when you have a great relationship but are not satisfied sexually.”
24 of 30
Relationship length: three years
Sex frequency: three to four times per week

“I'm at a point where I could be having much less sex and still feel satisfied. There's not a physical issue that makes this frequency a problem, but I do find myself feeling like I'm forcing it every so often. I'm still very much excited by my partner, and I enjoy having sex while I'm actually having sex. But, my libido has been totally slashed by my birth control, and I find myself physically exhausted after work, so it's hard to 'get it up,' if you will.

We talk about our sex life, and make jokes about it, DURING sex (in a very respectful and healthy way). We're also curious about other couples' sex lives; I feel like most people do it way less often, and he thinks that they do it more [than we do it]. I think I'm trying to justify my non-constant turned-on-ness as normal, while he wants to justify his constant turned-on-ness as normal.

We've talked about our sexual frequency, and if he could, my partner would be having sex every day (multiple times a day, too). He's frustrated because, for him, sexual desire is a manifestation of love; for me, it's something that can be totally separate, and I don't feel like I need to engage in it every day to show that I love someone. It's funny how compromises work — while this frequency is where we've met in the middle, we both feel like our needs aren't quite being met.”
25 of 30
Relationship length: five years
Sex frequency: three to four times per week

"We talk about sex pretty openly; we both came from different sexual backgrounds. I was a serial monogamist and had poor long-term sexual relationships, and he was a wild one-night-stander who had pretty unfulfilling one-night-stand sex. So, going into it, it was pretty important to both of us that we maintain solid sex communication — so we talk about it all the time.

I don’t really ever feel bored by our sex life. We have pretty decent sexual chemistry, so it's stayed pretty consistent throughout our relationship and marriage."
26 of 30
Relationship length: four years
Sex frequency: two to four times per week

“Because he doesn't live with me, and only stays with me on the weekends, it's great! We don't try to push it anymore — meaning, we don't feel we need to do it every time we're together. We were in a long-distance relationship while I was finishing up school, and those sexual experiences were so special because we really had to savor them. Not to say we don't savor them anymore, but now it's really about 'lovemaking' and pleasuring each other because we enjoy each other's body, closeness, embrace...or it can be a heat-of-the-moment thing and that's really sexy, too.”
Advertisement
27 of 30
Relationship length: one-and-a-half years
Sex frequency: 10 times per month

"I feel pretty good. I'm satisfied, and I never see sex as an obligation. Sometimes, there are nights when we're both tired, and I don't really want to have sex that much — but when my boyfriend doesn't seem to want to have sex either, and we go to sleep, I feel hurt. In those moments, the crazy rears its head and I feel this sense that we aren't having enough sex. But then I wake up in the morning, regain my sanity, and go on feeling good about life."
28 of 30
Relationship length: four years
Sex frequency: one to eight times per month

“I don’t feel great about our sex life. Most of the time, I feel like we should be having more sex. I’ve tried to change things up: lingerie, vibrator...buy it, use it once, put it in the drawer, and then it kind of just collects dust. It's hard to do the 'spice things up' game. Strangely, I don't feel free enough, even though I trust him more than anyone.”
29 of 30
Relationship length: two-and-a-half years
Sex frequency: two times per week

“I’m happy with our sex life. I wish I had more time/energy to devote to it, though. I also think he wishes it were more frequent. But we speak about our sex life very openly, mostly lightheartedly but sometimes more seriously.”
30 of 30
Relationship length: one year
Sex frequency: 14 to 16 times per week.

"We have sex a lot, and it's awesome. We both cum every single time, sometimes twice each."
Advertisement