Americans are having less sex and less relationships

Overall, American adults are having less sex than they did a quarter century ago, with married people showing the most dramatic decline of all. "What you need for a sex life is energy, focus, and time and the right mood", reasons Schwartz, adding, "If I've just run a marathon, is the first thing I want to do have sex?" Unpartnered people tend to have sex half as frequently as people who are in couples, says the study. They're also marrying later.

The result? Today's older people may be having less sex overall, but they're having a lot more sex for their age than younger generations are.

In the case of married people, the average number of times that married Americans had sex was 73 times per year. That number is even below the frequency for never-married people, who have sex an average of 59 times a year.

"As the boundary between work and home life continues to erode through technology and increasing expectations of availability, employers would be wise to consider practices, such as limiting urgent-response emails in the evening, when employees may be engaging in physical intimacy, which appears to positively affect work behavior the following day", the authors write.

Sex in America has declined, especially in the past 10 years, says researcher. The study indicates that married couples had less sex for an annual average of 56 times in 2014 as compared to the data from 1989 which has married couples enjoying an advantage of 67 sexual frequencies for that year.

The study, put out by researchers at Widener University in Pennsylvania, examined 30,000 US adults and also found that the rate of sex plunged from 64 times per year in 2002 to 53 by 204. The bottom line: Fewer young adults are in committed relationships, which could be contributing to the decline in sex frequency for that age cohort. It may also be that millennials don't feel like they need to have sex and are more interested in doing other things with their spare time.

"In a previous paper, we found that the happiness of adults over age 30 declined between 2000 and 2014", said Twenge.

That's according to a new study published this week, which found that Americans are having less sex now than in generations past - which includes Millennials having less than those at the same age of the previous generation, a conclusion from a previous related study. Another factor, the study notes, is that there might be differences in what is considered as sex between generations. Comparing the numbers to 1990s, the number of intimate encounters in 2014 has reduced by 16 times a year.

Is it possible to be happy when having less sex? "People aren't looking around saying, 'Hey, it's ten o'clock, what are we going to do?'"

The study showed that the decline has occurred regardless of people's gender, race, work or marriage status, education level and living region.

  • Lila Blake