Review Seeks Definition of Sexual Boredom

Sexual boredom occurs on individual, interpersonal, and societal levels, write the authors of a recent Journal of Sexual Medicine review.

However, sexual boredom has not received as much attention from scientific researchers as general boredom, they added.

They defined general boredom as “the experience of being disengaged from the world and stuck in a seemingly endless and dissatisfying present.”

They described sexual boredom as boredom with one’s sex life (e.g., boring sex). However, the concept itself is not concretely defined.

To find out more, they analyzed 43 studies published up to August 2020. Most of the studies included heterosexual participants. The authors categorized the studies’ focus as general boredom (17 studies) and sexual boredom (26 studies).    

The authors’ first research question considered the definition of sexual boredom. However, they did not find conclusive answers. In general, “sexual boredom was defined as the tendency to feel bored with the sexual aspects of life, and as boredom with boring sex,” they wrote. They added that no definitions were based on empirical research, and there were no formal theories to support them.

Their second research focus considered sexual boredom in the context of sexual function, relationships, and gender. They noted the following:

  • Sexual boredom seemed to be linked to individual traits, such as narcissistic personality and boredom proneness.
  • People with sexual boredom may masturbate or engage in compulsive sexual activities as a way to cope.
  • Sexual boredom was correlated with poor sexual response, including difficulties with arousal, desire, and orgasm.
  • Sexual boredom was linked to low sexual and relationship satisfaction, relationship conflict, and infidelity.
  • People who seek novelty in their sexual relationships might be less likely to experience sexual boredom.
  • Data from two studies suggested that men had higher levels of sexual boredom than women did.

The authors said that their results should be viewed with caution, and while correlations were suggested, cause and effect relationships could not be established.

Future research should involve other sexual orientation groups and varied types of relationships, such as consensual non-monogamy, they said.



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