Effects of intimacy on sexuality in long term committed heterosexual relationships

Brunner, Brandy Sarah
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University of Guelph

The purpose of this study was to provide a better understanding of the effects intimacy has on sexuality in a long term committed heterosexual relationships. Currently, few studies cover both, intimacy and sexuality, the majority of studies that focus on intimacy look at its effect on marital satisfaction (Harper, Schaalje & Sandberg, 2000). This study used a combination of questionnaires (PAIR, MSIS, and the ASQ) and open ended questions to address the research topic. Individuals over the age of 55 who are currently in, or have been, in a long term committed relationship were recruited through a community based sample. The data obtained from this study illustrate that there is a relationship between intimacy and sexuality in long term committed relationships and that changes occur over the course of a relationship. Some gender differences exist in expression of sexuality but not in perceived level of intimacy and there is no significant difference between widowers and non-widowers.

Intimacy, Sexuality, Commited, Heterosexual relationships, Long-term