I just got engaged. And I’m old. Okay, not Betty White old, but old enough that people who don’t know me are adding a -¦finally”¦” under their breath. And people who do know me are looking outside their windows to see if pigs are stuck in trees. Because they were flying, get it?
In the meantime, I’m in a weird limbo between single and married lands. I’m proud of being single into my late thirties, self-identifying all over the place as a sufficient, capable, man-less feminist. I got to a place where I could really see myself avoiding matrimony altogether, happily living out life as a proud auntie with nice handbags-not-diaper-bags and eight sound hours of sleep a night.
But obviously I kept dating. Now I have a wonderful man and a ring that keeps surprising me on my left finger. Welcome to No-Man’s Land for Singles! This is a happy land, where expectation and hopes are alive with promise, flowers, and gift cards to Bed, Bath and Beyond. It’s also the land where people totally freak you out with statistics. Recently, I ran across the scariest one of all in The New York Times – singles have better sex lives than married people! Was this true? I had to investigate.
So I can expect to hang up my libido when I file a joint tax return. Right? Not so fast, says the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction. As it turns out, 23 percent of non-married men and 32 percent of non-married women report that they did not have sex in an entire year. Only one percent of married men and three percent of married women shared that they did not have sex in a year. Further, 43 percent of married men had sex a few times in the past month, with similar numbers for married women. The number were much lower for the unmarrieds.
So it looks like, yes, marriage can lead to a more frequent sex life. But it is better? According to The New York Times, marrieds are more like to have orgasms and give and receive oral sex. But should a smug married point this out to a singleton, said singleton can point back that 11 percent of people who co-habitate or are married have been unfaithful to their significant others. So yes, marries are having sex – just not necessarily with each other.
For more interesting sex facts, check out this chart from the Kinsey Institute. (Five to ten percent of Americans engaged in S&M? How did I miss this?)