Twelve months is all it takes to bore a woman out of your bedroom, according to new research from Southampton University. Researchers surveyed a whopping 11,508 participants ages 18-72 of various relationship statuses—married folk, singles, parents—and found that, in addition to this short timespan, women are four times more likely to not care about having sex with their partner. Men, however, did not experience the same waning interest. This begs the question: are more men hardwired for monogamy than women?
Overall, roughly a third of women lacked interest in sex after a year of a monogamy, which is more than double the number of men. The research, published in the British Medical Journal Open, revealed another problematic insight: both men and women say that big reason they become uninterested in sex is because of past experiences of coerced (or forced) sex–a worryingly prevalent circumstance that affects both men and women. Other factors hindering sexual interest include poor health and sexually transmitted infections.
In terms of single women, they experienced lower desire for sex after they’ve had three or more partners within a year. That’s because of guilt. For mothers, the back-breaking factor of child rearing turned them off from sex. Women were also generally disinterested in sex if they did not share similar likes and dislikes in the bedroom. “Our findings show the importance of the relational context in understanding low sexual interest in both men and women,” lead author Cynthia Graham said. “For women in particular, the quality and length of relationship and communication with their partners are important in their experience of sexual interest.”
In 2013, a study from the Indiana University of Medicine drew a similar conclusion. Researchers posited that female libidos plummet in long-term relationships, going against the traditional belief that women are better suited for monogamy than men. In fact, male libidos remain more or less the same over time.
Don’t let this scare you. No penis has an expiration date. A relationship’s success is entirely dependant on how hard you’re both willing to work at it. Research published in PLOS One earlier this month suggests keeping your partner sexually satisfied isn’t complicated. The research, which surveyed 2,000 men and women who’ve engaged in a variety of sexual behaviors, analyzed the level of appeal of almost 50 sexual behaviors and found that most couples have engaged in about 30. According to their findings, both men and women desire romantic, affectionate behavior above all else. This means things that are more intimate, like kissing, cuddling and saying sweet things for no reason, are more appreciated than dirty talk and kink. If you want to keep your woman satisfied, make sure she feels desired. More important, let her know you desire her. Without intimacy, your sex life will be meaningless—and extinct.