Dissatisfied beautiful young woman in bed with sad expression on her face, sex problems in long relationship or marriage while man sleeping. Saturation or satiety between caucasian couple, disinterest

(© BillionPhotos.com - stock.adobe.com)

NEW YORK — People love to be loved. However, it turns out many people feel they’re coming up short when it comes to intimacy with their partner. According to a new poll, one in seven Americans in serious relationships say their partner doesn’t do enough to show that they desire them.

The survey of 2,000 sexually active adults in committed relationships finds that nearly every respondent says they believe it’s important to show your partner that you love them (97%) and that you want to be intimate with them (96%). However, nearly one in five people admit that being physically intimate with their partner has been a low or non-existent priority over the past year (18%).

The survey conducted by OnePoll for K-Y’s launch of the K-Y Desire Darkroom experience shows that, consequently, a quarter of those surveyed don’t think that they spend enough time being intimate with their partner. These feelings don’t always go away with time: 29 percent of respondents, who have been with their partner for at least five years, think they could use more intimacy in their relationship.

So, what’s the hold-up? On average, respondents say the stress of life negatively impacts their relationship three days a week. Thirty-five percent are affected even more often, citing that life’s stressors get in the way most of the week. To address this, a majority of those surveyed say spending time being intimate with their partner is a high priority in 2024 (55%).

“Keeping the spark alive in a relationship is rooted in showing that ‘I want you’ is just as powerful as saying ‘I love you,'” says spokesperson Mariia Tarakanova, marketing director for intimate wellness at Reckitt, in a statement. “Despite hectic schedules and life getting in the way, couples need to show their desire for each other.”

infographic about relationship goals in 2024

For the past year, saying “I love you” (51%), being positive to one another (50%), and spending more time together (46%) have been the top priorities for respondents. However, this year, goals look a bit different. 

In 2024, some of the top relationship goals are being positive with one another (37%), improving communication (34%), and being physically intimate more regularly (29%). Currently, just 28 percent of respondents in serious relationships are intimate with their partner at least once a day.

Results also show that those who have been in a relationship for under five years are more likely to be intimate with their partner daily (39%) compared to those who have been in a relationship for over five years (23%). This may be because respondents feel some aspects of their relationship are repetitive and could use a refresh, especially when it comes to the activities they do together (26%) and their time in the bedroom (23%).

Even those who have been together for a long time aren’t exempt, with 23 percent saying they’re a bit bored in the bedroom. Compared to the beginning of their relationship, 55 percent of respondents and their partners incorporate more new elements in their sex life today, like personal lubricant. However, one in seven people struggle with finding new ways to show their partner that they intimately desire them.

Man kissing or smelling woman's neck while kissing
Just 28 percent of respondents in serious relationships are intimate with their partner at least once a day. (© puhhha – stock.adobe.com)

With Valentine’s Day typically being the catalyst for romance, 65 percent of couples who spend the holiday together share that they wish they were just as intimate year-round. To mimic this, respondents would enjoy having their partner arrange dinner together at a favorite restaurant (53%), a romantic setting in the bedroom (47%) or a couple’s spa day (32%).

To get creative, respondents recall feeling wanted when their partner “surprised me with a new wedding ring,” “leaves me sweet notes,” and “gets me roses just because.”  Some of those surveyed even got a little risqué when they “send me naughty pictures.” These moments may be just what couples need to reignite the flame, as 68 percent already find their partner more desirable today than when they first met.

Similarly, 63 percent feel stronger passion for their partner today than when first meeting them, with men more likely to feel this way than women (73% vs. 55%).

“As evident through this study, we know the passion and desire is there and only grows throughout their relationships,” says Tarakanova. “This year, we’re encouraging couples to make time for these small intimate moments to show each other their ‘want’ instead of assuming their partner knows.”

Survey methodology:

This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 sexually active Americans who are in a committed relationship was commissioned by K-Y between Jan. 5 and Jan. 13, 2024. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose research team are members of the Market Research Society, the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).

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  1. Steve Siler says:

    Aging, as well a health, are issues that need to be considered.
    We have been married for 58 years, and never tire of a “I LOVE YOU”,
    and a long hug.

  2. Emory says:

    A study brought to you by KY. Nuff said

  3. Red says:

    Pleeeeeeeease stop the stupid. Intimacy is not the problem. It’s commitment through thick or thin. People think marriage is “supposed to be” some kind of panica. It’s not. It’s a choice with all of the “rights and privileges thereof”. Making a marriage work is not easy. You get what you give.