Sick of Banging Your Boyfriend? This Scientific Theory Explains Why
Have you ever been with a guy so long you stop wanting to have sex with him?
If not, you’re lucky. But if you have, you might have felt cosmically bummed that this person who you love spending time with no longer turns you on. You might even start to wonder if something’s wrong with you. You have 24/7 access to your favorite dude in the world but somehow you just don’t want to bang him. What the hell is up?
According to a scientific theory, this is totally normal and nothing to feel bad about. And it might even be fixable.
Sex expert Dr. Justin Lehmiller calls this loss of interest over time the “Coolidge effect.” Several studies have backed up the fact that when you have sex with the same partner over and over again, you can get sick of it and only feel renewed interest in sex when a new partner is introduced.
“Losing sexual interest in the same partner over time and being excited by variety is not particularly unusual,” Dr. Lehmiller writes. “In fact, I know many scientists who would argue that this may actually be normative.”
Okay, so it’s normal — but it’s still a bummer. So what can you do? Dr. Lehmiller suggests trying an open relationship. But if you’re the jealous type or just plain not into sharing your dude, that’s probably not an option.
If you’re not into bringing new people into the mix, you can replicate the feeling of having a new partner just by trying new things in bed, Dr. Lehmiller explains.
“Novelty can breed sexual excitement by facilitating the release of pleasurable brain chemicals,” he writes. “Research has found that the long-term couples who report having the most intense feelings for each other are those who engage in the most new and exciting activities together.”
More good news: Dr. Lehmiller has seen plenty of couples whose sexual interest in each other doesn’t decrease over time. So even if you’ve lost interest in a perfectly fine sex partner before, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re doomed to live out this cycle for the rest of your life.
“Not everyone loses sexual interest in the same person, and some people maintain very high levels of passion for the same partner for many years,” Dr. Lehmiller writes. “Human sexuality is incredibly diverse, and nothing is ever true 100% of the time.”