The Most Popular Sexual Behaviors? Romance and Affection Top the List!

Do you love having your partner whisper sweet nothings in your ear? Are cuddling and kissing among your favorite turn ons? Is a romantic atmosphere with candles and flowers what gets you in the mood?You’re not alone! A release from Indiana University quotes Debby Herbenick, professor and lead author of a study of sexual behaviors, as saying, “Contrary to some stereotypes, the most appealing behaviors, even for men, are romantic and affectionate behaviors. These included kissing more often during sex, cuddling, saying sweet/romantic things during sex, making the room feel romantic in preparation for sex, and so on.”

On August 28th 2017, Herbenick with researchers at the Indiana University School of Public Health-Bloomington and the Center for Sexual Health Promotion published a U.S. nationally representative study of sexual behavior, the Sexual Exploration in America Study. The paper, which appeared in in PLOS One, is the first to capture a wide range of diverse sexual behaviors not previously examined in the general population.

The release from the university explains that more than 2,000 male and female Americans were asked about whether they have engaged in more than 30 sexual behaviors. In addition, researchers investigated the level of appeal of nearly 50 sexual behaviors.The team found of those who completed the survey, many have engaged in a wide variety of behaviors and that some are fairly common.

The researchers also noted that, although many men and women rated a range of sexual behaviors as appealing and may have tried them in the distant past, fewer engaged in them in the past month or year.

“These data highlight opportunities for couples to talk more openly with one another about their sexual desires and interests,” said Herbenick. “Together they may find new ways of being romantic or sexual with one another, enhancing both their sexual satisfaction and relationship happiness.”

As a first-of-a-kind study in terms of the breadth of sexual behaviors examined, this research has many implications for the future understanding of adult sexual behaviors beyond those that have been previously recorded and studied. Sexuality educators, clinicians as well as people in the general population will now have a better understanding of the prevalence and diversity of sexual behaviors experienced by adults in the U.S. general population.

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