It is a common cultural assumption that men have a stronger sexual drive than women. In fact, numerous sources support the conclusion that men have more permissive attitudes about sex and engage in more sexual behaviors than women. In their meta-analytic review of gender differences in sexuality, Oliver and Hyde (1993) found that men had greater accep­tance of casual premarital sex than women and generally more permissive attitudes toward sex than women. Men reported greater acceptance of ex­tramarital sex than women and lower levels of anxiety, fear, and guilt than women. Men also reported greater sexual experience than women on a number of variables, including incidence of intercourse, age of first inter­course, number of sexual partners, incidence of masturbation, and fre­quency of intercourse.

Another data source is provided by Blumstein and Schwartz’s (1983) study of American couples. The authors examined sexual behaviors in het­erosexual couples, gay male couples, and lesbian couples. They found that the highest frequency of sexual behaviors were reported by gay male cou­ples, whereas the lowest frequency was reported by lesbian couples, sup­porting the conclusion that women are less motivated to have sex than men.