Sexual partners usually have discrepancies in their preferences for frequency, type, and timing of sexual activities, often referred to clinically as desire discrepancy (Willoughby & Vitas, 2011). A couple’s incompatibility in terms of these preferences can contribute to sexual dissatisfaction, even when either of their preferences is, in itself, not a sexual problem (A. Smith et al., 2011). Male-female differences stand out when it comes to the frequency with which they desire sex: The 2005 Global Sex Survey found that 41% of men and 29% of women want sex more frequently (Durex, 2006). Sometimes the relationship can accommodate these individual differences. However, when sexual differences are a source
of significant conflict or dissatisfaction, a couple can experience considerable distress. Instead of moving toward some compromise, the couple polarizes, and each individual believes that his or her partner either "never" or "always" wants to be sexual.