When it comes to carving bedpost notches, less is more.
A new study by researchers at Brigham Young University in Utah echoes a substantial body of research to conclude that some degree of premarital sex could affect your future relationship prospects.
Family studies experts at BYU’s Wheatley Institute have shown that 10-20% of married adults who have only had sex with one person, their spouse, report having a happier, higher-quality union than those who had many sexual partners before marriage.
They further found that those who had had only one sexual partner were almost three times more likely to report that divorce was not on their minds and twice as likely to report that they were “very satisfied” with their marriage.
“Our study confirms what other national studies have found in recent years, that couples who are sexually inexperienced are two to three times more likely to be in a highly stable relationship.
marriage,” Wheatley member Brian J. Willoughby, a co-author of the report, said in a statement to the religious university.
“It appears that sexual exclusivity between spouses provides an underappreciated foundation for the intimacies of marriage and helps spouses create a mutually satisfying relationship based on emotional intimacy and healthy communication.”
Definitely titled “The Sexual Experience Myth: Why Sexually Inexperienced Dating Couples Actually Have Stronger Marriages,” the new report was based on data from 3,750 Americans in committed relationships with the opposite sex, included in the National Study of Couples and Pornography. , and took into account a number of recent studies that showed a correlation between promiscuity and marital success.
Only one in 10 married people who label themselves “very sexually experienced” could say they are “very satisfied” with their marriage, according to the 30-page report.
Only 25% of married people who had 5 to 9 sexual partners and 14% of those who had 10 or more reported a “very high level of relationship stability in their marriage.”
On the other hand, 45% of those considered “without sexual experience” reported the highest degree of stability. Additionally, nearly 80% of those who have had sex with only their partner reported greater emotional closeness in their relationship, which is more than 20% higher than people who had multiple sexual partners before marriage.
In particular, the researchers saw no disparity between men and women when it came to the amount of sexual activity they reported before marriage.
Jason S. Carroll, associate director of the Wheatley Institute and a co-author of the report, assured singles who regret their sex lives that there is still time to change course and put future relationships on the prescribed path, noting that between 10 and 15% in the high sexual experience category “still doing pretty well in their marriages.”
“It is likely that these individuals have been able to improve their trajectory by changing the way they think about sex, approaching marriage with a lasting commitment, and embracing fidelity by avoiding alternative-seeking behaviors after marriage,” Carroll said.