Sex in San Diego: How much sex is enough sex?

by on May 3, 2012 · 5 comments

in Culture, Health, San Diego, Sex in San Diego

By Emilie Astolat

I like to think that my partner and I have a healthy amount of sex. In fact, that’s exactly what I think. But I have a sneaking suspicion that it’s nowhere near the amount that my partner would like to be having.

I can’t help but think back on Ernie McCray’s moving Sex in San Diego article in which he says: Whoo, doggie, [sex] was never a chore. Never. No “I’ve got a headache” in her makeup. I remember only being too tired just once and went on and did it anyway.

While there’s no denying the beauty and love about which that article was written, I found myself wondering at the end of it if I was somehow failing my partner.

Kristan von Hamle: "Codex Manesse"

I don’t want to be. I love my partner and couldn’t imagine a day without him. We are the best of friends and, very rarely, the worst of enemies. We are passionate. We laugh together and enjoying spending time together doing even the most mundane of things. We offer each other advice with our work and various interpersonal relationships. We make love, have date nights, travel well together and go on romantic walks.

But we certainly don’t have sex every day.

There are the usual excuses for that: I’m busy. I’m tired. When I’m not sleeping, I’m being a stepmother, working and going to school. By the time I get home at night, I’m exhausted and feel generally grungy. I want to eat dinner and decompress with some TV before passing out.

That doesn’t mean we don’t have sex — it’s just not every damn day.

So what’s the magical number of times in a week to make love? Is there one? What if I don’t hit it? Does it all start to add up to a time when he feels we’re no longer compatible?

I can’t be the only woman thinking these things. And when I hear about couples who have the love, the respect and the never ending, equally reciprocated sex life I can’t help but wonder what I’m doing wrong.

John William Godward: "The Old Old Story"

There was a period of time not too long ago when I felt so “blah” about everything that I didn’t want to have sex at all. It wasn’t like I was withholding from my partner and masturbating in secret. I had no sex drive whatsoever. It was miserable and I felt sad and guilty and unhappy. I know it was difficult for my partner as well.

But in times like that, what is the best course of action? Do you plug along for the sake of the relationship or do you tend to whatever emotional/physical/who knows what? barrier has popped up?

A woman I once knew would say yes. Yes, you put out no matter what. It’s the only way to keep a man from straying, after all. If you think that’s crazy, I also once had a friend whose mom told her if she learned how to give really good head she would always be able to keep her man. But maybe you don’t think that’s crazy. Maybe that’s the way it is.

I personally believe that solid relationships are based on so much more than sex. And I know that my partner values me for more than my vagina. But I also know that sexual satisfaction is a very real part of a successful relationship, and that a lack of libido can have very real consequences.

In fact, just last year a Frenchman was sued by his ex-wife for not having enough sex, and the divorce court ruled the husband not only was to blame for the breakup, but that he also should pay $13,000 in damages.

So, what do you think? Are we — both men and women — obligated to have regular sex with our partners? Is it OK to say no without feeling guilty?

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

judi Curry May 3, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Ya know, Emilie, until you have gone without sex for a period of time, the number of times you make love doesn’t mean a thing. Hell, I’d do almost – I did qualify it – anything for mutual satisfaction. Seems to me that if you are “counting” the times you are saying yes and doing a graph of comparisons, something is missing. What happened to “spontaneity” in the bedroom – or any other place, for that matter. It is so easy for women to fake an orgasm and let the male think that he has satisfied her, when all that has been done is to offer a receptacle for his sperm. Nah! It’s ok to say “no” – just not too often.


wondering May 3, 2012 at 12:36 pm

The author mentions a time where she felt uninterested in sex. I have heard same thing from a few other women in long-term relationships. I wonder if maybe it is not a phase… maybe it is just natural to lose sexual attraction to the same partner as the years go by?

Same question applies to men of course. For example, how much demand for Viagra among long-married men is because of true erectile dysfunction? Maybe he’s just suffering from been-there-done-that?

Reminds of the old punchline, “what’s the matter, you can’t think of anyone else either?”


Anonymous May 3, 2012 at 2:04 pm

There are many factors that cause relationships to end in divorce, and sex is often at or near the top of the list of causes. Sex is an instinctual need, not an option for humans who are not suffering from a medical condition effecting sex.

To ignore a partners needs or desires is to cultivate a rich soil where a problem in the relationship can germinate and grow into a problem so large it can easily end in divorce. We do so many things in our lives we do not want to do, because we have to. So why is it that some people who say they love and care for their partner ‘not be in the mood’ and will not do their part to make their partner satisfy a real need. Sex does not have to be an all engrossing experience for both people every single time.!

I get great satisfaction pleasing my partner, even if I do not achieve an orgasm. I am a guy by the way. I will please my wife when she wants sex because I love her and it does not have to be about me every single time. If my wife is hungry and I am not, do I refuse to make dinner? heck no, because that would be selfish. Making dinner and cleaning up afterwards takes far longer than sex and is far less fun to watch my wife enjoy.

If you want to keep your partner, do not let them go hungry. learn to please them and enjoy pleasing them because you love them. to ignore these needs is to guarantee a big problem in the relationship later. This is not sexist, this is statistical fact. A partner who feels their partner does not feel their significant other cares about their need for physical pleasure will be open to yerning for it in other places.

Is it really so bad to perform your partners favorite act of pleasure and show them we care? We do it for strangers with birthday cards, christmas presents, etc. it costs no money to have sex with your partner (and if it does, there are deeper problems in your relationship) . Sex is a need, not an inconvenience.


sig May 3, 2012 at 4:39 pm

im male, been married since 68…last time we had sex was in the 80s…i dont miss it…thats not how i define myself…


wondering May 4, 2012 at 7:21 am

very interesting perspective, sig. brings up so many interesting questions.
How common is your situation? how many people have little or no interest?
Did your interest fade away slowly or vanish quickly?
If you or your partner felt the urge for sex and the other didn’t, is there permission to roam? Would there be hurt feelings?


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