Research has traditionally cited pleasure and reproduction as the primary reasons to engage in sex. However, recent research suggests that there are many psychosocial reasons that women engage in sex and that relational factors such as relationship duration may also influence why women engage in sex. Few studies have examined reasons for sex among sexual minority women, although research has suggested that reasons may be similar to and different from those of heterosexual women. Using the YSEX? survey measure, the current study examined reasons for having sex among 229 lesbian, bisexual, queer and questioning women, aged 18–59 currently in a romantic relationship. The most frequent reasons women reported for engaging in sex were reasons related to pleasure and love/commitment. Contrary to theories of love and attachment, women in the current study did not report significantly different reasons for engaging in sex depending upon the duration of the relationship. Women in earlier stages of their relationship were just as likely to report engaging in sex to feel close to their partner, as were women in later stages of their relationship. In addition, women in later stages of their relationship were just as likely to report engaging in sex out of a physical desire for their partner as were women in earlier stages of their relationship. The strengths and limitations of the study, along with implications of the results are discussed.


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pp. 75-88
Launched on MUSE
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