Sex

The pursuit of (sexual) happiness

Gettin’ some makes us happier, as long as we’re having more than our friends…

What we are about to tell you won’t come as much of a surprise: the more you have sex, the happier you are. Intimacy is something we all crave, so it makes sense that if you’re getting laid like R-Gos’ character in Crazy, Stupid, Love then you’re going to be over the moon most of the time.

Now science has come along and proven what we always assumed: researchers from the University of Colorado found that satisfied people reported having nookie on tap. Interestingly they also found that someone could be loving life even if they only think they’re getting more than their friends. "There's an overall increase in sense of well-being that comes with engaging in sex more frequently, but there's also this relative aspect to it," said Tim Wadsworth, the associate professor who ran the study. "Having more sex makes us happy, but thinking that we are having more sex than other people makes us even happier."

Of the people surveyed (over 15,000 since 1993), those who believed they were having less sheet-time than their mates were unhappier. So if you’re usually a twice-a-week kind of person, and then find out that your BFF only gets some once-a-week, you’ll be happier than if you discover that she’s doing it every day. Those who said they have sex two to three times a week are 55 percent more likely to report a higher level of happiness than people who haven’t got down and dirty in the past 12 months. We’re a competitive bunch aren’t we!

It’s always a good feeling to know that you’re “normal” (or better than average) is any aspect of your life, so it follows that sex would be no different. But how do people even know how they measure to others sexually, considering it’s not something you discuss with your work mates in the kitchen or around the family dinner table? Wandsworth says media, like Cosmo (thanks for the shout out!), that regularly publishes sex surveys and stories about other’s sex lives, helps shape how people think about their own experiences. He also says that your friends play a major role, "There is plenty of evidence that information concerning normative sexual behaviour is learned through discussions within peer groups and friendship networks."

So the morale of the story is, go out and have more sex, or at least <think> that you’re having more than others!