Is my spouse attracted to me?

Jay Dee

Is my spouse attracted to me?

Sep 21, 2013

I wrote a survey this weekend to help out with a post and answer a question from a reader: Was their spouse attracted to them?  So many people commented, both in the survey, on Facebook, message boards, in emails, comments, etc., that they wanted to see the

Is my spouse attracted to meI wrote a survey this weekend to help out with a post and answer a question from a reader: Was their spouse attracted to them?  So many people commented, both in the survey, on Facebook, message boards, in emails, comments, etc., that they wanted to see the results, that I just have to share them.  At the time of this post, the sample set was 183 respondents.

Gender neutral questions

How long have you been married?

Length Of Marriage My last survey, I had broken this out into ranges, but then I realized my ranges were flawed.  So, this time I asked by what year you were married in.  But, now I have the problem that there are about 40 categories…So, I’m just going to jump by 5 year increments.  We have a pretty nice curve here, well represented, perhaps a little thin at the top, but given divorce and cancer rates…that’s probably fairly representative of the population.  The longest marriage that responded was 46 years.

 How old are you and your spouse?

Ages This is about what I would expect to see.  Not many young couples these days, many are opting to start later in life, which is a whole topic by itself.  The average age gap was about 2.5 years, with the smallest being the same age, and the largest being 20 years.

Gender of Respondent

Now, there is a stereotype that only men are interested in sex.  So, it would stand to reason that the vast majority of respondents would be male.  But in this case, we have a fairly even split: 54% Male, 46% Female.  I’m pretty happy about that.

Questions for the wives

Do you find your husband attractive?

  • Yes: 93%
  • No: 7%

Do you find your husband more or less attractive than when you first got married?

  • More: 49%
  • Same: 38%
  • Less: 13%

 Does your husband have any serious medical, physical or mental conditions?

  • Yes: 24%
  • No: 76%

Is your husband more or less fit than when you got married?

  • More: 16%
  • Same: 24%
  • Less: 60%

Do you currently have more or less sex than you did in your first year of marriage?

  • More: 30%
  • Less: 42%
  • Same: 28%

Do you like the current frequency of sex in your marriage?

  • Would like more: 54%
  • I like it where it is: 39%
  • Would like less: 6%

Did you see that?  54% of wives would like more sex!  I would bet a lot of their husbands don’t even know.  Though no doubt there are some marriages where circumstances simply do not allow for more, or make it difficult to increase the frequency.  Granted, they filled out a survey on a blog about sex…so there may be a bias within the sample set…

How many pregnancies have you had?

  • No pregnancies: 8%
  • 1 pregnancy: 6%
  • 2 pregnancies: 29%
  • 3 pregnancies: 28%
  • 4 pregnancies: 21%
  • 5+ pregnancies: 8%

Do you feel you are sexually confident with your husband?

  • Yes: 73%
  • No: 27%

I’m curious to see what the husbands think of this answer.   Stay tuned.

Does your husband express his attraction to you?

  • Yes: 79%
  • No: 21%

Do you feel tempted by attractive men in your life/workplace/church/area?

  • Yes: 15%
  • No: 85%

Do you feel your husband is attracted to you?

  • Yes: 82%
  • No: 18%

Questions for the husbands

Do you find your wife attractive?

  • Yes: 96%
  • No: 4%

Do you find your wife more or less attractive than when you first got married?

  • More: 56%
  • Same: 29%
  • Less: 15%

Does your wife have any serious medical, physical or mental conditions?

  • Yes: 16%
  • No: 84%

Apparently the wives are the healthier gender.

Is your wife more or less fit than when you got married?

  • More: 17%
  • Same: 25%
  • Less: 58%

How many pregnancies has your wife had?

  • No pregnancies: 14%
  • 1 pregnancy: 10%
  • 2 pregnancies: 26%
  • 3 pregnancies: 21%
  • 4 pregnancies: 17%
  • 5+ pregnancies: 11%

Do you currently have more or less sex than you did in your first year of marriage?

  • More: 19%
  • Same: 21%
  • Less: 60%

Do you like the current frequency of sex in your marriage?

  • Would like more: 75%
  • I like it where it is: 25%

True to the stereotype, none of the male respondents elected for less sex.

Who leads in the household?

  • Husband leads: 37%
  • Wife leads: 10%
  • Equal leadership: 53%

Who leads in the bedroom in your marriage?

  • Husband leads: 34%
  • Wife leads: 31%
  • Equal: 35%

Do you see that?  About 20% of the egalitarian respondents shifted as soon as we bring up sex.  It seems like 20% of the men had this conversation in their head:

Me: Who leads in the house

Respondent: We both do!  We’re equal and have equal roles!

Me: Including the bedroom?

Respondent: …oh, wait…no…she does…

Do you feel your wife is sexually confident?

  • Yes: 36%
  • No: 64%

Do you feel tempted by attractive looking women in your life/workplace/church/area?

  • Yes: 38%
  • No: 62%

Do you feel your wife is attracted to you?

  • Yes: 66%
  • No: 34%

Aggregate for both genders

Do you find your spouse attractive?

  • Yes: 95%
  • No: 5%

Do you find your spouse more or less attractive than when you got married?

  • More: 53%
  • Same: 33%
  • Less: 14%

Does your spouse have any serious medical, physical or mental conditions?

  • Yes: 20%
  • No: 80%

Is your spouse more or less fit than when you got married?

  • More: 17%
  • Same: 24%
  • Less: 59%

How many pregnancies for the wife of the marriage?

  • No pregnancies: 12%
  • 1 pregnancy: 8%
  • 2 pregnancies: 27%
  • 3 pregnancies: 24%
  • 4 pregnancies: 19%
  • 5+ pregnancies: 10%

Do you currently have more or less sex than in the first year of marriage?

  • More: 24%
  • Same: 24%
  • Less: 52%

Do you like the current frequency of sex in your marriage?

  • Would like more: 66%
  • I like it where it is: 31%
  • Would like less: 3%

Is the wife sexually confident?

  • Yes: 53%
  • No: 47%

Do you feel tempted by attractive looking people in your life/workplace/church/area?

  • Yes: 27%
  • No: 73%

Do you feel your spouse is attracted to you?

  • Yes: 74%
  • No: 26%

Temptation and the spouse attracted

Feeling attractive makes a large impact on whether or not you are tempted by members of the opposite gender.  I could find no stronger correlation in the data. If you are a husband and feel your wife is attracted to you, 29% say they are tempted by other women.  If you don’t feel your wife is attracted to you, that number nearly doubles to 55%. If you are a wife, and you feel your husband is attracted to you, only 9% are tempted by other men.  However, if they don’t feel attractive to their spouse, that number jumps more than five-fold to 47%. Moral of the data: make sure your spouse knows you find them attractive (speaking to the 95% of you who do find your spouse attractive).

There is also a strong correlation between the wife feeling sexually confident and the husband feeling tempted.  If the husband has a sexually confident wife, 17% are tempted by other women.  But, if she isn’t confident (hides herself, isn’t open about her sexuality, etc), that number jumps to 48%.  Almost half.  Moral of the data: be more confident (I know, easier than it sounds).

Husbands who are sexually fulfilling there wives (at least frequency wise) have little to worry about in this department.  If the wife is happy with the frequency of sex, only 3% answered that they are tempted (0% of those who want less sex).  However, if they aren’t being satisfied, if they want more sex, that number jumps to 26%.  Men have an almost identical jump, though the initial risk of temptation is higher.  They go from 21% when satisfied up to 42% when not.

So, for the wives, basically, the more sex your husband has with you, and the more sexually confident you are, the less likely he is to be tempted.

For the husbands…well…apparently getting her pregnant works (sorry ladies, this is your data).  The data shows that after one pregnancy, the risk of temptation drops from 43% down to 20% for women.  After a second, it drops to 17%.  One more, and it drops to zero.  This sadly doesn’t seem to have the same correlation to the men’s risk of temptation.  After two kids, it seems to rise from 40% up to 48% (likely due to the frequency and confidence factors) before dropping down to 30% after three kids and 23% after 4 kids.

It also appears that men have a real problem with the “in sickness and in health” part of marriage vows.  The risk increases from 34% without any serious issues to 56% if issues are present.  Women aren’t much better, seeing a doubling from 12% up to 25% for the same criteria.

But women don’t seem to care if their husband is attractive or not.  They stay in the 15-17% range, regardless of whether or not they are attracted to their husband.  Men on the other hand…well…I’d like to just say it plays a large role, but this is a post about data.  So, we see a rise to 75% risk of temptation when they don’t find their wife attractive.  Good news is, that’s a very small minority (5%).

Leadership and the spouse attracted

Leadership of the home is an interesting topic that has come up before.  I’ve heard men say “oh, my wife leads, and I’m OK with that” various times when talking face to face with them.  But get them to fill out an anonymous survey, and their tune changes.

When the wife leads the home, no man (according to the data) is satisfied with the amount of sex.  Whereas in egalitarian and husband-led homes, About 25-30% are happy with the frequency.  None of them are having more sex than the beginning of the relationship (as opposed to about 22% for the egalitarian marriages and husband-led homes), and only 10% are having the same amount (compared with 22% again).  So, basically 90% of the wife-led households are declining in intimacy, and only 56-57% are declining in the other leadership structures (which I think is still too high).  They are also much more likely to find their wife unattractive (20% compared to 2-3%).  Of course, part of this could be because attractiveness is tied to sexuality for men, and these wives who lead in the household, are far more likely to lead in the bedroom as well (70%), while the vast majority (90%) don’t feel confident sexually.  It’s hard to lead when you don’t feel confident in what you’re leading in.  This lack of being confident translates into the husband feeling unattractive (78%).  Sadly, this all leads to a 78% risk of temptation by their husband by other women.  Note: I am not saying the wives are responsible for infidelity.  I’m saying the circumstances seem to make the temptation stronger.  Each is accountable for their own actions.  Though, I do believe it is our job to help keep our spouse from temptation.

Do not refuse and deprive and defraud each other [of your due marital rights], except perhaps by mutual consent for a time, so that you may devote yourselves unhindered to prayer. But afterwards resume marital relations, lest Satan tempt you [to sin] through your lack of restraint of sexual desire.

1 Corinthians 7:5

Let’s take a quick look at egalitarian vs. husband-led, because that’s often a hot topic, and I’m curious about the data, and generally people don’t want to touch it.

Husband led marriages tend to have more pregnancies, with the average being about 3.1 pregnancies instead of 2.3 pregnancies for egalitarian marriages.  As noted before, husband-led households are less likely to have wife-led marriage beds (19% instead of 31%).  They are also 5% less likely to be tempted by other women, interestingly enough, this may be due to the fact that marriages where the husband leads, his chance of feeling attractive to his spouse rises from 63% (egalitarian) to 83%.  In the wife-led marriages, this drops to 20%.

Confidence and the spouse attracted

Some people in the comments mentioned that sexual confidence comes with age.  I’m sorry to say, the data doesn’t support that.  In fact, it seems an overall downward slope based on the wife’s age, starting with 60% saying they feel confident at age 20-25 and ending up at about 33% feeling confident at age 60-65.  But, there are noticeable spikes at 35-40 (70%) and 45-50 (59%), so guys, keep an eye out for those years.

But, here is the bizarre thing.  While confidence declines with age, it seems to increase with length of marriage.  I’m assuming this has to do with second marriages or some such thing, otherwise it makes no sense.  At the 0-5 year range, we see about 44% of wives feeling confident sexually, and it rises (with some ups and downs) to about 57% by 35-40 year marriage.

Comments

14% of respondents opted to leave a comment.  Thank you for those!  Your feedback is helpful and I will do my best to integrate it into the next survey.

So, let me leave you with this tidbit of information I picked up thanks to everyone’s data:

When is the spouse attracted the most?

25-30 years seems to be the sweet spot:

  • Desire for more sex is at an all time low (which could indicate you’re getting enough, thus high frequency)
  • Temptation is at an all time low
  • Wife’s sexual confidence at an all time high
  • Sexual frequency is the highest against other couples compared to the first year
  • Attractiveness to your spouse is at an all time high (90%)

So, for those who are going through hard times and aren’t at that 25-30 year range yet.  Hold in there, chances are, it’s going to improve.

Your Turn

Anything that surprised you from the data?  Does it answer the question “is my spouse attracted to me?”  Any questions that weren’t answered you’d like to have answered?  Let me know in the comments below.

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