Sexual abstinence in women is not an uncommon occurrence. There are two common opinions on the subject. One says that intimate relationships for women are simply necessary. The other – that they do not play a special role in a woman’s life. Where is the truth here?
Why do women abstain from intimacy?
First of all, this is due to the sexual temperament. Women with a strong sexual constitution are unable to do without sex for a long time. Most ladies have an average temperament – it is enough to make love 2-3 times a week. Moreover, they do not choose every man they meet as a partner, they need a comfortable environment, foreplay and so on. If a man does not meet their needs (he does not like the look, unkempt, too rude), they may refuse to intimacy.
Finally, women with a weak sexual temperament (their 10% of all women around the world) do not place a high value on sex. Much more pleasure they derive from intimacy with a partner. If they do not find a man, they may not have sex at all and take it easy.
In 1998-2001, Denis Donnelly and Elizabeth Burgess of Georgia State University conducted a study in which 60 men and 22 women who had not had intercourse for six months or more, although they wished they had. They were roughly divided into three groups. The first included “virgins” – people who have had no sexual experience at all. In the second – those who have had such experiences in the past, but was currently single. The third group included married people who have not had sexual intercourse in marriage. Surveys showed that “virgins” from adolescence suffered from low self-esteem and shyness and did not have romantic relationships in their youth. “Singles” retained bad memories of their past experiences and had difficulty getting into relationships with new partners. In the “family” in the past with a sexual life was relatively normal, but gradually it came to naught, and look for partners on the side they did not want for various reasons.
The harm of abstinence
Opponents of abstinence, argue that regardless of temperament, it is harmful to all, without exception, women.
Specialists from the American Mayo Clinic experimentally found that women who have not been intimate for a long time, poorly cope with stress. Scientists see the reason for this in the fact that during sex good mood hormones are produced – endorphins. In addition, women who have experienced sexual abstinence, decreased immunity. The fact is, said the study authors, that sex contributes to the production of the steroid hormone – dehydroepiandrosterone, which is necessary to strengthen the immune system. Thus, in the absence of sexual activity increases the risk of certain diseases, such as urinary tract infections.
But most importantly – in the body there is a hormonal imbalance, which leads to a disturbance of metabolic processes. Women begin to suffer from migraines, may become bloated, she goes through PMS syndrome and menstruation more easily, the thyroid gland malfunctions, there may be diseases such as mastitis and uterine fibroids, and in advanced cases – and cancer.
Abstinence also has a negative effect on memory. Scientists from the Mayo Clinic have found that during sexual intercourse there is increased activity in the hippocampus, which affects long-term memory and the formation of new neural connections in the brain.
The benefits of abstinence
However, not all experts support the idea that sexual abstinence is harmful. For example, the famous American scientist Herbert Shelton (1895-1985) in his article “The myth of the necessity of sex” wrote: “I know many women, young and old, who are perfectly chaste and do not feel worse about it than married women. Some of them have reached an advanced age and have not suffered from the nervous disorders that are often claimed to result from the suppression of sex.”
Most experts believe that there are still some benefits to abstinence from sexual activity. In particular, a woman does not have to worry about pregnancy, there are no negative emotions associated with failed relationships, and she can pay more attention to her career, creativity, and children.
No one claims that loneliness and lack of intimacy is a good thing for a woman. But maybe it’s not as bad as some experts paint it. It’s all individual.