Women as keen as men for group sex

Last updated 05:00 27/05/2009
Fairfax Media
PLEASURE PRINCIPLE: Almost as many women as men instigate the idea of group sex, according to a new survey.

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Australian women are as keen as men to take part in consensual group sex, and they initiate it almost as often.

These are the key findings of a survey conducted among members of the nation's second biggest online dating site.

Almost 40 percent of respondents report an equal gender split in the group encounter, while a further 30 percent report a majority of men taking part and 30 percent a majority of women.

Almost as many women as men instigate the idea of group sex -- 46 percent compared with 54 percent, according to the sizeable RedHotPie.com.au survey, which drew 8,763 responses from among its 1.5 million member listings.

A narrow majority of those engaging in group sex are couples, rather than singles, and most of the couples participate together.

The survey was carried out in response to questions from the national newsagency AAP following revelations of a group sex culture in rugby league which cost former NRL star Matthew Johns his television and coaching jobs.

The most common reasons given for group sex are excitement, variety and to spice up long-term relationships.

The most common form of group sex is a threesome, although one third of respondents say their largest group involved five or more people.

Participants are not at it all the time, with 40 percent saying they have tried it only once, and little over one in 10 doing it weekly or monthly.

But there seem to be few tears after bed time, with 80 percent reporting nothing but fun, with everyone's rights being respected.

Reasons cited by the comparatively small number of regretful participants include judgment impaired by alcohol, jealousy between partners and being pressured into it.

RedHotPie.com.au relationship expert Geoff Barker said the survey suggested Australian women were more sexually liberated than men.

"I thought you would find it skewed towards guys, but the reality is women are pursuing group sex just as much," he told AAP.

"Women don't feel judged or watched by society the way Australian men are feeling.

"Women's sexuality is encouraged by the media and the men folk.

"Men tend to be a little bit more shy in the sex department."

He said stories from the rugby league world had given group sex a bad press.

"This kind of thing has been going on since Adam and Eve," he said.

"It's not going to stop purely and simply because society says it's good or bad.

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"Consent is a massive part of this. When you tar an activity with a brush like this, and you make it out to be this terrible thing, all you are doing is pushing it underground and making people feel less comfortable.

"Life is short. You should be able to experience as much as you like as long as you are not hurting other people."

Barker said group sex was more widespread than many people thought, yet most participants felt it was no one else's business but their own.

"So the reality is the person you are sitting next to at work could be up to all sorts of interesting fun and games, and you would never know about it," he said.

"A survey like this opens people's eyes.

"If you participate in group sex, you might feel like you are a little bit out on your own, but the truth is you are not.

"The secretary at work or the guy on the building site might say, 'You know what? I don't feel dirty about this any more, or weird or strange, and I could even talk to my partner about this now'."

AAP

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