So, this past week we ran a survey. Basically I was curious about how different working combinations in a marriage play out in terms of sexual frequency. Again, as always not that sex is the end all and be all of marriage, or that frequency is the best measure, but it’s the most objective, quantitative barometer of a marriage that I have. If there is another, please let me know.
I was really curious to see how the data would stack up against the traditional/conservative few of “Husbands work, wives stay home and raise the kids” vs the postmodern/liberal view of “Gender is a thing of the past, anyone can do anything”. I hope you are as curious as I was. So, without further ado, here are the results.
I’m not going to full every piece of data, because we’ve beaten some of them to death in other surveys, so I’m going to skip by the typical questions, unless they prove pertinent in a specific correlation.
I should say though, that at the time I pull the stats to do my analysis, we had 215 respondents, 82 female, 129 male…and 4 unsure? (they skipped the question) We had the typical spread of ages, marriage lengths, etc.. and of course, the typical “How often do you have sex” was just over 2 times per week.
So, on to the interesting bits.
70% of our respondents have a full time job, 14% are unemployed, leaving 16% partially employed.
64% of respondents spouses have a full time job, 21% are unemployed, leaving 15% partially employed.
In 35% of the households, both the husband and wife have a full time job. In 4%, neither do.
91% of respondents have children.
50% of respondents have children who are away during the day. 7% have children who are away for the week, but still consider their house “home”. 15% have kids who have moved out. 14% have kids who are too young to go to school.
And surprisingly, 19% home school their children. I’m a little surprised by this, because, although I’m very pro-homeschooling, I know not nearly a fifth of the households do this…not even in Christian circles. Perhaps I have a larger percentage of home schoolers following me because we home school our children.
What about the sex?
Yeah, I know, that’s what you’re waiting for.
Work and Sex
So, how does work and careers affect sex in the household? Let’s take a look:
Our “average” in this survey is 2.1 times per week across all the respondents.
If both spouses have full time jobs OR one spouse has a full time job and the other has a part time job it drops to 1.9 times per week. Not a big drop really. This is becoming the new norm. 35% of our respondents are in this scenario.
If neither spouse has a full time job it drops to 1.2 times per week and if neither spouse has any job it drops further to 0.5 times per week, or once every 2 weeks. This isn’t surprising as security, which includes finances, is a big part of having a happy marriage.
Here’s the interesting piece: if one spouse has full time job and the other is unemployed, it raises 2.7 times per week. Now, does the gender matter? Turns out it does.
If it is the wife who has the full time job and the husband is unemployed, the frequency of sex in their marriage is 1.8 times per week. But, if the dynamic is reversed, if the husband has the full time job, and the wife is unemployed, the frequency jumps up to 2.8 times per week.
Parenting and Sex
There seems to be a progression when you have kids.
When you start off with no children, the frequency is 2.1 times per week. Then you have young children and it drops to 1.9 times per week until they go to school. It stays at 1.9 times per week while the children are in school during the day and then when they go off to boarding school, college or university, it raises to 2.3 times per week. Lastly they move out and it levels off at 2.2 times per week, only slightly above where you started.
That is…unless you home school. Homeschooling parents seem to buck the trend and I’m not quite sure why this is. I mean, homeschooling should mean more stress, less time, more parenting, but, contrary to what I would think is common sense, homeschooling parents have sex 2.9 times per week on average. This is a full 50% increase over non-homeschooling parents!
One interestingly thought, as Chris over @ ForgivenWife.com pointed out (yep, we bloggers talk), the homeschooling parents have just about the same amount of sex as the couples where the husband works and the wife stays home. So, I wondered what would happen if we took gender into account. Turns out that if the husband is the stay-at-home teaching parent, then the frequency is 2.0 times per week, not really different than the other schooling options. BUT, if it’s the wife who stays home and teaches, it jumps to 3.3 times per week: a 74% increase over non-homeschooling parents.
So, that’s the data. What do I make of this? To me, this is another example of God’s word shown through real life. To me, the Bible seems to be in favor of husbands working and wives taking care of the home. I know many disagree, and I’m okay with them disagreeing…but the data seems to agree with me. I also believe the Bible is in favor of homeschooling rather than sending kids to institutionalized education. Again, I know many disagree, and I’m okay with them disagreeing…but again…the data seems to agree with me.
What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments section below.