Do married couples have the best sex?


In 1994, the University of Chicago conducted the largest most scientific study ever attempted on sexual behavior in the United States.  The researchers concluded that:1

  • Married couples who practice fidelity report the most positive feelings about sex.  They feel “taken care of,” “loved,” “satisfied,” and “wanted.”
  • Married couples who practice fidelity are also the least likely to experience “sadness,” “anxiousness or worry,” “fear,” and “guilt” about sex.
  • People who have multiple sex partners are the least sexually fulfilled.

Numerous studies have verified these findings.  For example, one study found that 72% of married “traditionalists” enjoyed a high level of sexual satisfaction.  (A “traditionalist” was defined as someone who “strongly” believes that sex outside of marriage is wrong.)  This was 31% higher than the level of satisfaction reported by sexually active singles.2

So why do faithful married couples tend to have the most satisfying, enjoyable sex?   Because marriage provides a physically and emotionally secure place for couples to share their lives together.  If they’re committed to each other, they work through every problem and challenge, without fear of being rejected or abandoned.  If they’re faithful to each other, they don’t worry about getting used or picking up STDs from other partners.  If they develop a lifelong friendship, their love will grow deeper and their relationship will be grounded on honesty, trust, respect, communication, and shared values.  All of these things work together to make sex more than just a “fun” experience.  Sex becomes something sweet, deeply intimate and emotionally satisfying.  It becomes an expression of love, care and commitment for another human being – a love that would do them no wrong.


  1. Edward O. Laumann et al., The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994) 368.
  2. William R. Mattox Jr., “The Hottest Valentines: the Startling Secret of What Makes You a High-Voltage Lover,”  The Washington Post, Feb. 13, 1994.