Here’s a scene you rarely see in a movie: Man looks a woman longingly in the eyes and says, “Just hold me.”
But that’s happening in more bedrooms around the world than we realize, according to a new Kinsey Institute study that found that kissing and hugging are more important to the happiness of men than of women.
Researchers at the Kinsey Institute at Indiana University in Bloomington studied 1,009 heterosexual couples from the U.S., Brazil, Germany, Japan and Spain who had been together for an average of 25 years.
The participants, between the ages of 40 and 70, filled out questionnaires about their sex lives and relationships. The results shattered a number of stereotypes, including the finding that despite a perceived fascination with threesomes, men don’t really want to share their partners, Time reports.
The survey also found that men who reported frequently kissing and cuddling with their partners were three times happier with their relationships than those who rarely curled up on the couch with their beloved. For women, displays of affection didn't have nearly as much impact on their levels of satisfaction with their relationship, CBS reports.
What did lead to greater satisfaction was longevity. Women reported much higher sexual satisfaction if they’d been in the relationship for 15 years.
"Possibly, women become more satisfied over time because their expectations change, or life changes with the children grown," study author Dr. Julia Heilman, director of the Kinsey Institute, said in a statement. "On the other hand, those who weren't so happy sexually might not be married so long."
Among the five countries, couples in Japan reported much greater relational bliss than American couples, who reported being happier with their partners than couples in Brazil and Spain. As for sex, Japanese and Brazilian women reported the greatest satisfaction, as did Japanese men.