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Is Married Sex Boring?

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Network television seems to think so, says the results of a new study. 

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Ever notice how single people on television always seem to have a blast in bed? Between all the partying and partner swapping, having sex when you're single seems to sizzle a lot more than when you're married. But is it an unfair portrayal of those committed for life or is art actually imitating real life?

On TV, even when the characters are married, they still can't help but bed hop with people other than their spouses. Think: Eva Longoria's character's affair with the hot young gardener on Desperate Housewives, or Kim Cattrall's character who regularly bedded married men on Sex in the City. And who could forget Tony Sopranos' endless string of affairs on The Sopranos? Yeah, maybe those situations aren't the norm in our lives, but the whining for sex on Everybody Loves Raymond does seem to hit home a bit for some moms.

According to a new study released this week by the Parents Television Council, network TV "seems to be actively seeking to undermine marriage by consistently painting it in a negative light."

The Council also claimed topics like voyeurism and sadomasochistic sex outnumber married sex references--and the effects on kids is dire because behavior that was once seen as "fringe, immoral or socially destructive has been given the imprimatur of acceptability by the television industry." In other words, if kids are exposed to kinky behavior enough, they'll start to think it's normal.

And when researchers analyzed different television shows to rate bad examples of sexual behavior, they found Grey's Anatomy took the lead with singles Meredith and Derek frolicking in bed and Boston Legal for a conversation about prostitution. The study also showed that "Family Hour" contained the highest ratio of references to married sex versus non-married sex.

Which got us thinking, which TV married couples got it right in the sack?

Mike and Carol Brady: Every evening on The Brady Bunch, Mike and Carol lay in bed--she with her needlepoint, and he with his book. And inevitably a freckled-face kid wandered in with a dilemma, killing any chance of romance. But we have to question their sexual chemistry to begin with--a perfunctory peck on the lips ended each night.

Peg and Al Bundy: Peggy was an undersexed housewife on Married with Children who, despite hubby Al's penchant for scratching his crotch and chugging beer, wanted her man badly. Al, on the other hand, used sex as bribery when he wasn't running away from her sexual advances.

Miranda Hobbs and Steve Brady: On Sex and the City, she was a wealthy NYC lawyer looking for a one-night stand and he was a bartender who had slacked off most of his life. But despite their differences, they married and lived in Brooklyn while their sex life remained in Manhattan.

Eric and Annie Camden: Although this 7th Heaven couple weathered lots of issues as a family--teen pregnancy, drug use, and near death accidents--Eric and Annie remained blissfully happy. But with seven kids running around and a dog named Happy, when did they ever find time to hit the sheets?



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Click to see the "Bedroom Report: TV Couples We Love" gallery.



next: Bad Habits Actually Good for You!
5 comments so far | Post a comment now
Alicia August 13, 2008, 8:50 AM

For the record Samantha Jones from SATC only bedded ONE married man and she paid dearly for it. Regularly, is a misnomer.

kris  August 15, 2008, 2:10 PM

This is quite a complicated matter and sometimes can take awhile to straighten out. Please stick it out. It was hard when the kids were small and at home, but afterwards, the investment of 30 years has certainly paid off . It’s been hotter and sexier than ever. I hope I’m not the only one. I’m sure I’m not.

Terri November 12, 2008, 5:31 PM

Yes, the sex is worth the wait in a long term marriage! It’s fantastic since our children have moved out of the home!!

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DavidHunter January 14, 2010, 8:57 PM

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