British comedian and writer Stephen Fry has caused a stir with his controversial comments regarding the reasons women have sex. In a recent statement, Fry said “sex is the price [women] are willing to pay for a relationship with a man, which is what they want.”
Fry also said he felt sorry for straight men because he believed women would only have sex with them in order to keep them, according to the Times of India. Many feminists have come out against his statements, saying women have been liberated from men for decades in our modern society and don’t need men for a paycheck.
As a happily married man of almost two decades myself, I would have to disagree with Stephen Fry as well. Here’s my take, coupled with a survey taken on women and sexuality.
Reasons for Sex
U.S. News and World Report published an article regarding a University of Texas survey in 2009. In the online survey, more than 1,000 women from ages 18 to 87 were asked 237 yes or no questions as to why they have sex. The entire study was published in a book, “Why Women Have Sex”
The two researchers found the number one reason women have sex is because they are attracted to their partner. The second most popular response was for physical gratification. Perhaps having sex is less about relationship maintenance and more about enjoying being with someone women care about and love.
CNN expounds further and says other responses included having sex out of a sense of duty and to cure a headache. The repercussions of sexual experiences ranged from destroying women’s self-worth to the ultimate lovemaking experience with a partner and edifying their relationship.
What My Wife Says
When I first met my wife, she was a complete sexual mystery to me. Now we have what I would call a “comfortable understanding” of what her likes and dislikes are in the bedroom.
Originally what I thought would please my wife doesn’t necessarily ring true for her. Even things done to help her have the best and most pleasurable experience possible aren’t necessarily what my wife wants all of the time.
Men can have sex at the drop of a hat, at least that’s my experience in my own sexuality. My wife, and I think this rings true for many women as well, says sex is all about feeling close to someone. It’s not just the physical act or pleasuring that makes my wife want to have fantastic sex, but the moments leading up to it as well.
Those moments leading up to physical pleasure are what make my wife want to be with me. Sex is all about the emotions of being with your partner, and not just physical pleasure for my wife. She has to have the feelings first and then she can manifest those feelings into sexual energy. It doesn’t work the other way around.
I would have to disagree with Stephen Fry’s assertion that women only have sex to maintain relationships with men. In my experience with the same partner for almost 20 years, I would say sex is about feeling close to someone you love.
Sen, Debarati S. “Is sex the price women pay for relationships?” Times of India.
Kotz, Deborah, “Why Do Women Have Sex?”U.S. News and World Report.
Landau, Elizabeth, “Love, pleasure, duty: Why women have sex”, CNN.com.