Ok, I know what you’re thinking. The answer to this question is soo obvious… But you’d be wrong!
A paper published to the Web in July 2007 by two University of Texas psychologists, Cindy M. Meston and David M. Buss, entitled Why Humans Have Sex lists 237 distinct reasons! And they run the whole gamut of human emotions ranging from altruistic (“I wanted the person to feel good about himself/herself”) to vengeful (“I wanted to get back at my partner for having cheated on me”).
In fact, they even differ between Men and Women. For example, here are the top 10 reasons for both genders:
Top 10 Women’s Reasons for Sex
Top 10 Men’s Reasons for Sex
(Don’t forget it keeps you healthy and helps you live longer…)
The report lists the top 50 (and the bottom 50 – which are horrible) reasons for each gender, so feel free to take a look.
The study also reinforced a few things that seem pretty obvious. For example:
Men showed significantly greater endorsement of having sex due to physical reasons, such as “The person had a desirable body”; “The person was too “hot” to resist,” and simply because the opportunity presented itself.
Women exceeded men in endorsing certain of the emotional motivations for sex, such as “I wanted to express my love for the person” and “I realized that I was in love.”
But before all the women begin jumping up and saying that all men are pigs, the study also points out:
This finding supports a growing body of clinical evidence suggesting that both men and women at times desire intimacy and emotional connectedness from sexual activity.
So, even though the data suggests that men generally desire the physical “stress reduction” aspect of sex more than women, it should not be construed that they don’t care almost equally about the intimacy that accompanies it.
Interestingly enough, the report more or less also doubles as a “how to” manual to assist in finding others who are most likely to want to have sex. The participants in this study were put through a personality test to determine which of the Big Five personality traits they most closely matched.