The new mantra for women who feel their sex life is boring and bereft of passion: connect love with sex and enhance the pleasure between the sheets.
According to an interesting study, love and commitment can make sex physically more satisfying for many women.
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"In our study, women said that they connected love with sex and that love actually enhanced the physical experience of sex," said Beth Montemurro, associate professor of sociology from Penn State Abington, a commonwealth campus of the Pennsylvania State University.
In a series of interviews with 95 women between ages 20 and 68, most said they believed love was necessary for maximum satisfaction in both sexual relationships and marriage.
The benefits of being in love with a sexual partner are more than just emotional. Most of the women in the study said that love made sex physically more pleasurable. Women who loved their sexual partners also said they felt less inhibited to explore their sexuality.
"When women feel love, they may feel greater sexual agency because they not only trust their partners but because they feel that it is OK to have sex when love is present," Montemurro noted.
Only 18 women unequivocally believed that love was unnecessary in a sexual relationship.
"The connection between love and sex may show how women are socialized to see sex as an expression of love," Montemurro maintained in a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association Tuesday.
"For the women I interviewed, they seemed to say you need love in sex and you need sex in marriage," Montemurro concluded.