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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

The O-Face: Subtleties of sex drives


Differences in libido are
apparent in every individual.

Some people are naturally more or less horny than others. Some want to have sex with as many partners as possible and others are happy being with just one person.

These individual differences eventually congregate to overall stereotypes.

It’s commonly thought that men have higher sex drives than women, that they want it more often and with more partners. It’s also common to believe that men think about it more and pursue sexual activity with greater desire. I was a die-hard believer in this throughout my teenage years.

Merriam-Webster describes libido as a person’s desire to have sex. I believe this definition can be broken down much further.

Sex drive not only encompasses your desire for sex itself, but how actively you pursue it. It’s also how much you think about sex, how many partners you desire, how often you want to have it and how much you masturbate and fantasize about sex.

It’s an innate desire that is different for every person.

I believe that, generally and regardless of sexual orientation, men do have higher sex drives than women.

Several studies from The Journal of Sex Research and the National Center for Biotechnology Information have shown that men masturbate more, actively pursue sex more and desire sex with more partners than women do. Research done by Blumstein and Schwartz on gay, lesbian and transgender couples shows the same results.

I also believe, however, that women have a greater capacity for sex than men do.

They can physically have sex longer and experience more orgasms in a shorter period of time. My experience has shown me that women want sex more frequently than men and are ready to have it more often.

To me, this isn’t sex drive, but sexual capacity.

However, I also think that individuality is most important here.

It should be noted that having a higher or lower sex drive is not better or worse. It’s simply different.

Issues can arise in some relationships when the scale of sexual desire is tipped too heavily in one direction. The partner with the higher sex drive ends up feeling rejected while the other partner tries to apologize for their lack of desire.

While my girlfriend and I have balanced sexual desire for one another, there are times when similar situations arise between us.

A discussion about why our desires were different at that moment in time is all that is needed to gain mutual understanding for the other person’s needs.

These needs and desires are different for everyone. Whether men or women have higher sex drives will continue to be debated, but I personally believe that it doesn’t matter either way.

What matters is being happy with your sexuality and the sexuality of your partner or partners.

Michael Karp can be reached at [email protected] or @_MichaelKarp on Twitter.

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