When it comes to sex and relationships, men and women aren't quite on the same wavelength. Stereotypes do point to women having more emotional investment in a relationship and men wanting more sex, but how valid are those assumptions? A recent survey indicates there may be some truth to them.
In early May 2015, online legal marketplace Avvo polled 2,001 U.S. adults online about their sex and relationship wants and habits to find out how men and women differ when it comes to intimacy and in doing so found some interesting tidbits.
When men and women were asked if they would consider an open relationship, more than half of the men were willing compared to 62 percent of women, who said they were against it.
Though men surveyed were more open to inviting another into the bedroom, 94 percent of them reported being happy with their relationships. Basically, they just want to have some fun.
Sociologist and sexologist Dr. Pepper Schwartz believes that, minus a few exceptions, the desire is more of a pipe dream than something the men actually need to fulfill.
"I think many Americans like to think of themselves as liberal and sexually adventurous," Schwartz said in a press release. "It might sound sexy to have an open relationship, especially to young people. But the fact is most human beings are territorial, they don't like sharing and they especially don't like sharing someone they are in love with."
The survey also revealed that men are confused about what they want. Either that or they want to have their cake and eat it, too. Survey results indicated that relationship satisfaction doesn't indicate how likely a person is to cheat or not cheat: Even though 9 out of 10 of men surveyed reported that they were happy in their relationships, one in six of them said they have been unfaithful.
And though 20 percent of men were likely to report having cheated (compared to only 13 percent of women), more men than women hold traditional views of marriage, such as believing someone should marry the person they have a child with and considering cheating to be a sin.
Marriage and Happiness
Even though a majority of men reported relationship happiness and hold more traditional views on marriage, women are the ones who believe their love will actually last. Seventy-five percent of women were more likely to believe their relationship would make it the long-haul, compared to 55 percent of men.
Women are also more likely to want to get married.
"While there are exceptions to this, most women don't feel secure unless someone, as the song says, 'put a ring on it,' " Schwartz said. "Furthermore, there are no other acts of romance that say as much as marriage does because nothing else is a vow to be together forever."
Still, women aren't as hopelessly romantic as the above statistics would point to. In fact, more women than men would rather be alone than unhappy with someone.
Relationship Ideals by Region in the U.S.
When it comes to cheating, the poll results revealed that Midwesterners were the most faithful with only 10 percent of those from that region having cheated. In contrast, the West came out as the most unfaithful, in regards to both married and unmarried participants, with 19 and 20 percent of them admitting they've cheated on a partner. The West was also the most accepting of open relationships, though now it's apparent why.
But when it comes to being hopeless romantics, Midwesterners take the cake, with 71 percent agreeing that relationships are meant to last. And even though Northeasterners are the most cynical, with only 61 percent agreeing that relationships can last, more than half of the survey participants in every region were optimistic.
Avvo conducted the survey to better understand the America cultural experiences — they are a legal company after all — but the results tell us a lot more than that.
Anyone else want to move to the Midwest?