Photographs: t69 on Flickr.com/Wikimedia Commons Courtesy LoveMatters.info
You may be compatible and in love, but how well do you match up sexually?
How well you're matched for sex affects whether your sex life will be full of passion, or full of problems.
The catch is that being sexually similar to your partner has different consequences for men and women. Scientists quizzed 35 newlywed couples: what's more important for sexual satisfaction, your own sexual make-up, or the match with your partner?
The couples answered questions about getting turned on, feeling sexually inhibited, and how mood affects their sex drive. The researchers then looked at how well a couple's answers matched -- and whether it affected how they got turned on, and how satisfied they were in bed.
The more similar a couple are when it comes to sexual inhibitions, the fewer problems the woman will have getting into the mood, the study found.
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Different for girls
Photographs: Jorge Mejia peralta from Managua, Nicaragua on Flickr/Wikimedia Commons
For women, getting aroused also has to do with how feeling anxious or stressed out affects her and her partner's sex drives. The more in synch the two are, the more likely a woman is to have problems with sexual arousal.
Unlike women, for men, getting into the mood is only a matter of their own sexuality -- it's got nothing to do with being in synch with their partner, according to the study.
How much being in a good mood affects sex drive is linked to sexual satisfaction for both men and women. If both partners get aroused when they're feeling happy or cheerful, they're likely to feel satisfied with their sex lives, and this is especially true for men.
Can't get no satisfaction
Photographs: Anamix257/Wikimedia Commons
Being satisfied in bed also has a lot to do with individual traits, regardless of how similar partners are to each other.
Being sex-mad doesn't mean you're likely to be happy with your sex life, the study revealed. It turns out the more easily or often a man or woman gets turned on, the less satisfied he or she is likely to be sexually. This could be because the satisfaction you get from sex is short-lived, because in no time at all you're ready for more.
Men and women differ in whether it's good or bad moods that most affect their sexual satisfaction. Bad moods are more important for men -- guys whose sex drive isn't affected by stress, or who even get turned on when they're under pressure, are more satisfied in bed, the study found. But whether a woman is sexually satisfied, on the other hand, has more to do with how much being in a good mood boosts her sex drive.
Photographs: AnonMoos/Wikimedia Commons
More than 80 per cent of wives and 25 per cent of husbands have problems getting into the mood for sex sometimes. The 35 couples were young newlyweds, so you might think they wouldn't be able to keep their hands off each other. Yet many of them still had trouble getting turned on.
Your individual sexual make-up is important to your sex life, the researchers conclude -- what turns you one, what makes you clam up, and whether sex for you is to celebrate when you're cheerful or unwind when you're stressed. But for a really sizzling sex life, say the scientists, it also comes down to how well you're in sync with your partner.