You probably don't love the idea of being "normal." After all, isn't it better to be above-average in terms of smarts, looks and success? But sometimes normal is exactly what you need — reassurance that you're not alone in an experience. Such is the case with romantic relationships. Do you ever wonder how yours stacks up against others?
Wellness entrepreneur Chrisanna Northrup worked with two of America’s top sociologists, Dr. Pepper Schwartz and Dr. James White, to write The Normal Bar. Nearly 100,000 respondents around the world were surveyed about their relationships, from their behaviors to how happy they were. By studying the results, you can see not only how your relationship compares, but also how small changes could improve it. Below are 10 signs your relationship is "normal," when compared to those of other Americans. Not good, not bad, just normal.
1. You wish your partner was more romantic.
Conventional wisdom says that women care more about romance and men care more about sex. The Normal Bar shows that, yes, both of these are in high demand but also that the two desires aren't all that far apart — more romance generally means more sex. And, curiously, 64 percent of men who took The Normal Bar survey said they crave more romance, compared to 63 percent of women.
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2. You and your partner don't show PDA.
Speaking of romance, or lack thereof … If you've been with your partner long-term, you've probably noticed a change in how often you kiss, the frequency of sex, and, well, just about everything. After 10 years in a relationship, nearly half of all couples stop showing affection in public. The same applies for people age 45 and older.
3. You masturbate, no matter how much sex you're having.
Masturbation isn't an alternative to sex with a partner. For 96 percent of men and 82 percent of women, going solo is a supplement to regular partnered sex. Clearly it's the "normal" thing to do!
4. You give — or receive — directions during sex.
Not getting enough out of sex? Speak up. You won’t be alone — 63 percent of women and 59 percent of men discuss sexual technique while in the act. After all, the squeaky wheel gets the oil!
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5. You have sexual fantasies ... that aren't about your partner.
Go ahead. Fantasize about George Clooney… or that new woman at work. The survey says that 53 percent of men and 38 percent of women admit to thinking about someone other than their partner during sex. (Hmmm... How many just aren't admitting it?) Another finding: It has nothing to do with how happy or attracted they are to their sweetheart. Keep reading...
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