According to new research, men may be mushier than they let on. A study found that men are more likely to be satisfied with their long-term relationships if there's plenty of kissing an cuddling involved. Plus, men are more likely to say they're happy with their relationships, while more women report being sexually satisfied.

Psychologists from The Kinsey Institute at Indiana University followed 1,009 coupes from the United States, Brazil, Germany, Japan, and Spain, according to LiveScience. The participants, who were all heterosexual, had been in relationships for one to 51 years, and half had been together for at least 25 years. The participants filled out questionnaires on the health of their relationship. The researchers found that the men in longer relationships tended to be happier. However, for women happiness trailed off between years one and 15 of a relationship, then started increasing again between years 20 and 50. Lead author Julia Heiman explains, "The period of less satisfaction seems to overlap with the period of raising children, during which other things really take a focus."


The researchers were surprised by their findings on sexual satisfaction. Women said they grew more pleased with their sex life over time, and men said kissing and cuddling made them happier in the bedroom. It's possible that both factors increased over time because relationships in which women are unhappy sexually and men aren't physically affectionate don't last very long. The psychologists plan to keep studying the sex lives of people in long-term relationships, but say they learned a lesson from incorrectly predicting men's fondness for snuggling. "The really useful message is, don't make presumptions about the genders," said Heiman. "Because there's no way to be sure you're going to be right in any way."

Study: Men Need Cuddles, Too [LiveScience]

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