Men often get a reputation for having NSFW sex fantasies, but a new survey found they have a bit of a different desire: most men prefer more sensual and romantic forms of sexual behavior. The research found that both men and women of all ages prefer affectionate sexual behaviors such as kissing and cuddling above all else, suggesting that at the end of the day, we all just really want to be held.

Despite the fact that humans have been having sex since, well, forever, our partners’ true desires in the bedroom have remained a mystery for most people. Thankfully, a group of scientists from the Indiana University School of Public Health have peeled back some of the mystery to reveal what men and women want more of in the bedroom. A number of sex acts made the list, such as masturbation and oral sex, but the majority of respondents admitted that they’d like a bit more romance and affection in their relationship.

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“Contrary to some stereotypes, the most appealing behaviors, even for men, are romantic and affectionate behaviors,” lead author Debby Herbenick said in a statement on ScienceDaily. “These included kissing more often during sex, cuddling, saying sweet/romantic things during sex, making the room feel romantic in preparation for sex, and so on.”

The survey also revealed which types of sex acts respondents had previously tried. They were asked whether they’d engaged in more than 30 sexual behaviors and how appealing these behaviors were. Wearing sexy lingerie and underwear, and sending/receiving nude images were rated high by the bulk of the group, IFL Science reported.

These findings are in line with past research, which has revealed that most individuals think the best part of sex is not the pleasure of the moment, but the cuddling and feelings of closeness that often follow. Many studies have shown that a more active and healthy sex life is generally associated with more happiness and life satisfaction, however, research released earlier this year found that sex-induced happiness only really exists if the act is followed by positive emotions.


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