Do Indian Couples Have Less Sex?

by Sharell शारेल on November 3, 2011

in Culture Shock in India, Daily Life in India

Post image for Do Indian Couples Have Less Sex?

While we’ve been on the topic of relationships lately, a reader recently wrote to me and wanted me to bring up the issue of sex between Indian couples. What prompted her was this article in The Times of India about a “libido crisis in the lives of many a married Indian couple”.

She actually provided me with a guest post which I’ve agreed to publish (and excellent timing too, as the change in weather in Mumbai has left me feeling a little…under the weather. Which is why I’ve unfortunately been a bit quiet around here).

She says:

Obviously Indians have a huge quantity of sex. Indians have reproduced so often that India now has the second highest population in the world, 1.2 billion and growing every day. I am curious more about the quality of sex for Indian couples, especially after the culturally required children are produced. In my opinion arranged marriages, lack of sex education, and a society that still views discussing sex openly a taboo all contribute to unhealthy sexual relationships in India.

Here are several examples of sexual problems from among my Indian in-laws and friends:

  • My sister-in-law is not attracted to her arranged marriage husband and they rarely have sex, especially now that their “duty” of producing two children is fulfilled. Being attracted to your partner is a key component of sexual satisfaction.
  • My cousin has not slept with her husband in years because she is too afraid to initiate sex and he never does anymore. Perhaps her husband is gay? Forcing homosexuals into heterosexual marriages may be another reason so many Indian couples have problems.
  • Another one of my husband’s relatives recently died of untreated AIDS and I suggested that her husband get tested. I was shocked when my husband replied that his aunty did not get the disease from her husband because it was a well known fact that she had not slept with her husband in over 20 years.
  • One of my aunts refused to let her husband touch her after her second child was born. I guess she thought sex is only for procreation.
  • An aunt has not slept with her husband in over 30 years as he preferred to sleep with his mistress.
  • A cousin allows his 14 and 7 year old children to sleep in the same bedroom as him and his wife. Another aunt always slept in the same bed as her daughter, not her husband. They are not the only Indian couples I know who allow their older children to sleep in their bed. I will admit that I allow my young children to sleep in my bed but it is easy to sneak out of a room with a two year old sleeping, it is not so easy to have any fun with nine year old Junior in your bed.
  • Due to the small size of some Indian homes, my husband and I have occasionally had to share a room with my mother-in-law and father-in-law or some other relative. Those nights where intimacy was impossible were very frustrating, I can only imagine how difficult it is for Indian couples who face a lack of privacy on a regular basis.
  • An Indian woman I know told me that her mother-in-law regularly sleeps in the same bed that she and her husband share. She told me that she has “no privacy.” I know that “privacy” is an Indian English euphemism for sex. Not only does her husband do nothing to stop his mother from entering his marital bed, he also forced his wife to bear another child after their firstborn was a girl. I can only imagine that a forced pregnancy harmed her sexual relationship with her husband.
  • An Indian friend holding a graduate degree confused the names of the basic parts of her reproductive system. I learned about those parts when I was 10 years old in a gender-segregated reproductive biology course.

In particular, her questions are: Are these sexual issues widespread in India? Is my husband’s family unique in their need to hire a sex therapist?

Photo: Khajuraho temples by Kuranda

48 people like this post.
© Copyright 2011 Sharell शारेल, Diary of a White Indian Housewife 2008-2014. All Rights Reserved. Do not copy and reproduce text or images without permission.

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{ 390 comments… read them below or add one }

Luiza November 21, 2011 at 3:02 pm

so guys you are telling me there is no Kama Sutra for the average Indian couple??!! I am Brazilian living in England and I became interested in the India culture after watching a Brazilian soap opera called India, a love story (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BG3DT1Y5Kzo ), I am so shocked to find out that most Indians have a poor sex life! The soap used to show the bride and groom being told by their relatives about the kama sutra just before they get married and how to be a good lover according to Kama Sutra, does it really happens? in my mind sex in India was always like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbImx-ww04w

I know the Kama Sutra has a lot more than simply sex but it has wonderful sex tips and it makes me wonder what is thought of a person who is reading this book in India? Are they regarded as perverts?

Sorry for the lack of knowledge about your country folks but I’ve never been to India and I have no Indian friends, all I know about India came from this Brazilian soap plus some reading in this blog, India, a love story, left millions of Brazilian people in love with India, me included.

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Manny November 22, 2011 at 12:56 am

Oh Lord Luiza!

That show you are talking about, I saw the first 4 or 5 episode here in the US that was dubbed from Portuguese to Spanish. Oh lord, don’t go by that show at all!

It was hilarious.. from what I could understand from the subs. The only thing is, the show didn’t seem to have an agenda…so It looked like the show was made with genuine affection/curiosity of Indian culture. But oh lord, A friend of mine and a few cousins of mine who live here in Dallas, TX were watching the show with me,with some amusement. We had a good time laughing.

:P

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gahir June 15, 2013 at 2:07 am

Yes..As an Indian, I must let you know that most of the Indian’s do have a poor sex life..more than 80% of the people. There was a time back in the past when parents used to discuss about the importance of healthy sex with their children before their children got married. Unfortunately, a majority of the people of India think of sex as an act to procreate or an act done only to satiate the sexual appetite of the husband.

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Rakesh October 16, 2013 at 6:04 am

@Luiza: Kama Sutra was written in the ancient India, where sex life wasn’t considered taboo. In fact, it was used to be studied/discussed in details – like any other subject. But all of that changed from the medieval times due to the Islamic rule in India – as Muslims considered sexual study/discussion as taboo. It was followed by the British rule, which promoted the Victorian values. So, the last thousand years moulded the Indians’ personality in many ways – including their views regarding sex.

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umots October 16, 2013 at 8:30 pm

@ Rakesh
That doesn’t hold water. As a written text, the Kama Sutra was only accessible to the educated class – the kingly and scholarly elites in ancient India. A critical read of the abridged Kama Sutra makes it obvious, that the context and scenarios discussed (such as harems, access to court musicians, etc.) in KS weren’t meant for the masses.

Which is not very different from how it is in India today. The wealthy and educated elite in India has a more sexually liberal lifestyle, while the middle and lower classes in India are mired in feudalistic taboos.

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Luiza November 21, 2011 at 3:08 pm

Also, a lot of people talking about kids sleeping with the parents, in Brazil it is common to allow your kids to have a little nap on the parents bed then the parents move them out to their own bed.

I had my own bed and used to sleep in my parents bed, then when it was their bed time my dad would carry me to my own bed and I’d wake up in my bedroom, he did this up to the age of 8-9 when I became too heavy to be carried lol if I woke up in the middle of the night they’d lie on my bed until I slept then leave the room, I never slept on their bed full time and I’m the only child so no sisters to share the room with. I think it worked very well as I was asleep when they moved me out of their bed lol will do the same to my kids

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madras.fr November 29, 2011 at 4:55 pm

Hi!

I’m a french woman who have settled in Chennai almost 6 years ago. I’ve come here to learn music so I’m interested in Indian culture, in various aspects, and I try to be as less judgemental as possible and not to generalize too much about any topics.

I found this topic very interesting since it is very difficult to talk about this here. I do have Indian friends and with 2 only I could speak about intimate matters.
The 1st one was a male friend who is quite used to mingle with foreign people as a guesthouse owner. Myself being a nurse, I can speak quite freely about sex in an informative way. So he took the advantage of it to ask me many questions. As a 40 year-old married man, he told me that he had never seen his wife naked even after 20 years of marital life. He had also never seen a condom and I had to give one to him so that he could know how it was. One day, saying that I was so surprised to see how India seemed to be so sexually repressed when in Western countries it is known for Kama Sutra, he answered that, that had been written in “uncivilised” time!

The 2nd friend is a female who has made a “love” marriage to a man who is 16 years older than her, and who claims to be a modern Indian man because he spent 2 years in Australia in his 20s. Then he won’t let his wife go outside without calling her every 15mn and he is not even able to get some water boiled by himself for his daily black tea. Then my friend told me that her means of retaliation is to frustrate him: no sex.

Then I’m in a relationship with an Indian man. He has been traumatized by his arranged marriage, got divorced and by no way would get married again. So we have to be very secret and our relationship suffers from this since there are vey few opportunities for us to be together without being noticed.
Being a Western woman, I’m not sexually obsessed, nor even loose and will be faithful to the man I love even if our situation is not as fulfillng as I would like it to be.
So in my experience, India is very frustrating as far as intimate life is concerned.

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Hélène November 30, 2011 at 12:37 am

Hello I am also French and now married to my Tamil love. On my first visit to Chennai, the first Indian people who were friendly with me turned out to be an unlegitimate couple on a romantic week-end. (I was very distraught and the lady – also a nurse – gave me many good advice. ;) )

It’s sad that you and your boyfriend can’t be seen together. Does he want to protect your reputation ?

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Vidyut November 30, 2011 at 9:20 pm

Hi Helene ,

This Tamil Song is making waves on the webs. Have you heard it ?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YR12Z8f1Dh8

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Hélène December 1, 2011 at 4:56 pm

Thanks, that’s a nice song ! ;)

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Vidyut November 30, 2011 at 5:09 pm

madras.fr

“As a 40 year-old married man, he told me that he had never seen his wife naked even after 20 years of marital life. He had also never seen a condom and I had to give one to him so that he could know how it was.”

Its painfully surprising that such people exist.Not seeing a condom could even be explained but I can’t find a reason of any person not seeing his partner naked even after 20 years.Is it really possible to produce children with our cloths on ? ;)

you said -

“So in my experience, India is very frustrating as far as intimate life is concerned.”

Anyone with the bizarre personal experiences you had would think on the same lines about the sexuality of India.No doubt about it.

But I feel that it would be unfair for a country as diverse as India in culture and social norms , to be painted with the same brush because of 2-3 personal experiences.

I can assure you that many Indians numbering more than the population of France have not only seen their partner naked but also seen a condom and used it. ;)

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Sharell November 30, 2011 at 5:45 pm

Is it really possible to produce children with our cloths on ?

@Vidyut — it’s simple lift the sari sex! :-)

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Arvind January 12, 2013 at 9:16 pm

Made me smile :)

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madras.fr December 2, 2011 at 6:33 pm

Hi Vidyut,

Of course I’m aware that one example can’t be true for one billion of individuals. But I remember an article I read some years ago about the fact that nudity is one of the last big taboos in India. Surely this is changing fast when one can see more and more mini skirts on tv shows and bollywood movies.

I’m in my 40s and so are most the people I know. So they maybe less “up to date” and more conservative than younger ones ;-) .

And about my own frustating experience of India, I have no other choice than to cope with it. When you are white, even Chennai is like a small village, everybody recognizes you and is curious about your life. So it gives you few opportunities to have a private life when it does not fit to Indian standards.But settling here has been my own choice and it’s up to me to adapt to Indian way of life. And if most of the time I feel very happy being here, sometimes it also makes me feel boiling ;-) .

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madras.fr December 2, 2011 at 6:49 pm

Hélène

No, actually I think we both care more about his own reputation than mine ;-).
I do care about what people think about me but up to a certain point only. I guess it’s far more difficult for an Indian to be criticised by his family members, friends and neighbours than for foreigners who are expected to have a looser way of life.

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Atul December 12, 2011 at 10:58 pm

I am with Mohit, I feel that the “western” women are like survey houses, they jus built their “concept of The Indian Male” from someone they saw around a slum. You dont find every Indian male unzipping around every possible wall. And except for the molestation outside the night club at mumbai, I havent come across any tales of molestation or groping in India. Probably the incidences are far less than in the “west”. And then again, its the attitude of the women-folk. One of my Indian friend recently went on an Europe tour and she found it highly acceptable for men there to pass comments at her. She even slept with a stranger who hit on her in a bar there. This same lady would not even take a compliment on a good note back here in India. She says, she was simply flattered!!
I feel that Indian men are one of the only surviving Chauvinistic races on the planet, women here are respected more than any other place on earth, atleast in my part of India. Where on earth would you find seats reserved just for the ladies in public transport? Infact, I feel that the law in this country is actually tilted towards the women folk.

I seriously do not understand the women in your blog, I donno where they have been or what they have done with Indian men to make them come up with such comments!!

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Atheist Indian December 13, 2011 at 4:47 pm

It is how you pass the comments that decides whether it is creepy or it is flattery. Your style, your body language, the tone of your language, the words you use and even how attractive you are.

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Manny October 17, 2013 at 1:10 am

the words you use and even how attractive you are.”

Exactly! Women tolerate a lot of shit from good looking guys…and won’t tolerate anything from ugly men.. Ugly men flirts with them, they’d want to call the cops on them.

I should know! They have always been nice to me! :P

Tsk Tsk!

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madras.fr December 13, 2011 at 4:50 pm

Atul

I’ve this bad habit of reading newspapers everyday, which you may include in the qualification of “survey houses”:
http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/tp-tamilnadu/article2693482.ece

At least in Chennai, I’ve never seen any bus with “reserved seats” for women but I guess that if the female sitting area in all the buses in Chennai is separated from the male sitting area, it is to prevent any indecent behaviour. On the part of whom, I’ve never been able to say ;-) .

Besides, I’m thinking to move from my actual flat in ground floor,just because I happened to come back home one month ago at 22.15 pm and was followed by a guy who, 5 min after I had reached, tried to get inside my place on a fake pretext. To shut the door on his face was not enough to discourage him since he came back a few days ago and opened my window in order to leer, I guess…

A part from this and some other incidents, I don’t have any stereotyped “concept” on Indian men and will never stick any label on any individual, Indian or else, male or female, at 1st encounter, even less on 2nd hand information.

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Independent Me October 20, 2012 at 6:33 am

I am a woman and I do not need specific seats reserved for me on the bus. All of my arms and legs are working quite well and I am equal to men. So why do I deserve a seat on the bus as compared to my brother, father, son, or boyfriend??

And as for Indian men being chauvinists, do you even know what the term means?! It is the idea that men are superior to women. Education is what you need, sweety.

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Themanhimself October 26, 2012 at 4:52 am

Very true dear. I wonder if our dear Atul really lives in India… :D

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Omkara April 14, 2013 at 9:23 am

Atul probably meant ‘Chivalrous’. simple malapropism, I would say.

I disagree with much of his view, but do agree that some (mostly the pseudo/wannabe westernized) Indian women take some perverse pride in deriding the Indian male and falling for anything western, including men. it is not much different from the typical american woman considering the european guys oh-so-charming and american guys all boors. The fact that culturally and socially Indian male has little experience in dating and buttering up women with sweet nothings and empty compliments would certainly work against them.

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true patriot June 19, 2013 at 2:12 am

i mus say that maam u mus definitely pick up an english hand dictionary. chauvinists means thinking your country is important n morally better than others. please i request you to go 4 an english class so that you donot make fun of a language. well i am an indian n i now think u r rather chauvinistic.

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Manny October 17, 2013 at 1:12 am

“Chennai is separated from the male sitting area, it is to prevent any indecent behaviour. On the part of whom, I’ve never been able to say ;-)

I suspect it’s to prevent French women from groping Tamil guys. :P

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arobindo May 19, 2014 at 6:28 pm

Hi,
about molestation, let me say that my wife complains that some times she is molested on an ac volvo bus in bangalore. dressing you will say, well she wears kurtis, has vermillion on her forehead, etc. no revealing clothes, but still the molestation. sometimes by men old enough to be her father. i have asked her to carry a pin and pin then whre it hurts the most so that they will move away by themselves.
forget her, i used to travel by bus for 2 hours everyday to work, and sometimes sitting on the aisle seat, some stupid guy would be rubbing his you know what on my shoulder. asking him to move away, he would come back again. thats when i started using pins.

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chumee January 5, 2012 at 1:17 pm

Wow, this post is so sad and so true! (The article as well.)
I have good friends who actually prefer to go to sleep next to their children and make their husbands take the kids’ room. On the other hand, I have friends who have conceived while their first child was sleeping in the same bed! This honestly horrifies me, but they just laugh it off.

And then of course there are those who just don’t seem to need sex at all!!! For months to years at a time. Maybe they are evolving into higher beings… soon they may not even require food! :)
This country is sheer madness.

Sharell, I stumbled upon your blog a few days ago and I’m enjoying what you have to say, so much of which I agree with. I’m Indian, though I’ve grown up abroad, and I moved to India a few years ago, when I had a whirlwind arranged marriage. I got lucky. My husband is a modern, educated and attractive man :) Although my family is quite modern, there are social/cultural queues that we are just brought up with and being here, we end up putting up with ‘whats expected of us’. I’ve tried fighting it so many times and now I prefer to choose my battles. Interestingly, it’s the same for my husband too.

Kudos to you for sticking around and putting up with the madness… and enjoying it too! :)

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Jayme February 8, 2012 at 3:47 pm

I knew this Indian couple who got married. The wife came to me distressed saying that they had been trying to have children for a while now but nothing happened. I was about to suggest to see a doctor when she said they were still using condoms. This couple had no idea what so ever what the condom was preventing or why to use it. I think Indians definitely need more sex talks.

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Sharell शारेल February 8, 2012 at 5:07 pm

Oh dear. That is really dismal! :-(

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honey February 10, 2012 at 5:22 pm

oh the couple very cute… :D …hope now they know the truth

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Chanakya February 11, 2012 at 5:05 pm

Sorry to interrupt but seriously what you are saying is more like a joke than reality.

First thing is that in this age of information when condom is advertised everywhere on tv, on radio on newspapers, it is impossible to to imagine even a rural folks not knowing what condoms are for ?

Second thing is that when they were using condoms that means they would have known why were they using it and why had they purchased it.

While I can agree that Indians need to be more educated towards sex but at the same time I would like people to be realistic, logical and practical while making a joke on Indian couples.

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prashant February 23, 2012 at 12:19 am

for the sake of knowing everybody should know that indian people first originated ancient expertise treaties on sexology in the form of kamasutra, which extensive implemantation you all people can see in the caves of ajanta and elloras ,extension of sexual awareness was so much intense in ancient indian wisdom that infact the very premise of creation holds the worship of SHIVLINGAM .. Indians are usually passionate to put themselves beyond the merely materialistic aspects of life and nature. All of the poor conditions of an ordinary indian life is totally unrelated to their inherent depth of beautiful phylosophy of life, in other words their cause is not in indian culture and thoughts but the social conditions which has taken it’s shape throughout foreign invasions. And at last that of ”nice condom joke” could be from any part of the world ,not necessarily from india.

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Kris September 26, 2013 at 9:36 am

That’s a well known joke.

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MK March 3, 2012 at 4:49 pm

First and foremost, you need to understand that sex in Indian society is approached from family/social context than enjoyable experience between two married individuals.

For Indians sex is a procreation exercise, it’s not clubbed as a exciting/fun/enjoyable experience. Only in the western context sex is bracketed towards a fun/enjoyable experience, in the Indian context it is considered more as part of a marriage/family duty. So once a married couple have completed their expected duty to procreate and have sons/daughters as expected by the society(meaning family/relatives), they move on to other expected desires like buying a house or educating the children.

For the Indians Sex is just one part of the many things that needs to be accomplished in life. So if there is no available setting(like kids sleeping in bed because they don’t have extra room, parent living with them etc), they forgo this urge which is perfectly reasonable .

I recommend Sudhir Kakkars “The Indian” for a deeper psycho analysis for deeper understanding on why we do the things the way we do ;)

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Themanhimself October 26, 2012 at 5:07 am

” Only in the western context sex is bracketed towards a fun/enjoyable experience, in the Indian context it is considered more as part of a marriage/family duty”

Not only in the western context. I’m an African, there also we enjoy sex though we consider it as marriage, duty, procreation stuff… or whatever.

”For the Indians Sex is just one part of the many things that needs to be accomplished in life”’

How many girls a rape in India per day? is rape part of that life accomplishment? I think indian folks like every human beings like sex and need sex. But because of the religious-cultural-traditional-social restriction imposed in indans daily life, their sex drive just got repressed. And that’s just unfortunate :(

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An indian Australian... March 6, 2012 at 10:31 am

Hi Sharell,

Stumbled on your blog, and have loved browsing through it. I am the indian gal, who came here to melb 25 yrs ago ( arranged marriage) and stay here. As for the indians and sex life… Its too difficult to generalise. By and large, you are right, and I have found a lot of people seem to loose interest as they grow older… BUT then I have found that people in their 40′s even her in Aus ( the ones with a family of studying kids, mortgage etc) seem to kind of drift away…
I thnk one of the main reason may have been the fact that sex education in india is still very vague and parents are in general too uncomfortable talking about it. So it depends on your own peers and what books you read etc… Also, you will find that the quality and quantity of romance/sex varies based on your socio economic status.

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Ria April 19, 2012 at 6:39 am

Hi Sharell,

I agree with Indian Australian.These can depending on numerous factor socio economic status, surroundings(urban vs rural) and so on.I wouldn’t generalize.

But one thing I have to agree on is that these issues are more prevalent in arranged marriages.

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Ramki April 28, 2012 at 2:29 pm

I accidentally stumbled upon this blog and in fact never wanted to comment, but was so amazed by the amount of ill informed folks over here that felt it may be good to tell my 2 cents on some basic facts.

People talk about privacy and things like couples having sex right having another kid or parent sleeping in same room in India, simply don’t understand the geography or society or economy in India.

For those ill informed, do not forget that India is a densely populated – we are less than 40% of australia (in terms of physical area) but have 60 times the population. And right for several millenia, India was a densely populated place, which means physical space is always at premium in India. Given this, it is natural that Indians (of all social backgrounds) give less priority to privacy. If Great Britain did not colonize Americas and Australias and canada in last 300 years, I am sure that british people would be doing the same thing and they would be in fact sleeping right on top of their grandparents while doing the sex act !

And also Indian homes are much smaller in size, given that economy is much smaller and people cannot afford to build bigger homes. So that should explain why people give less priority to privacy here. People in any nation , in any time, behave practically and not to please some politically correct self styled liberals

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Manny April 28, 2012 at 6:51 pm

+1 :)

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Themanhimself October 26, 2012 at 5:12 am

Hey Ramki,
Good trial of explanation, partially true, but sad indeed :(

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ritu June 7, 2012 at 2:06 pm

that was really funny to learn that indian couples dunow what a condom ws for.silly joke. Let me get you know that india is the first country in the world to introduce aswell adopt the family planning norms and hence condom too i guess:D indus valley civilization is al well known in history.i dun feel to throw light on that.india is not al jus about kama sutra.it has diversity.the people who dun accept nudity i think they are more reformed and civilized than sm those cultural groups who in this century wana their women to go bare chested in streets juz like men do. Atleast indians are civilized,we are modern.and people who call them modern are still living in d era of early man.lmao modern ta asi a.tusi thodi

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Supreet Shahi June 7, 2012 at 3:08 pm

and secondly when a man’s basic needs like food shelter clothing sleep safety etc are not met what the hell he ll think about sex.funny!
This ll only happen in the case he is having increased libido nd surely need to consult sm psychiatrist,,, he is sick!

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Bailadila June 29, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Evil West Invented Sex To Corrupt Innocent Indians… Sex is the greatest sin… Sex is against Indian culture…

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Sharell शारेल June 29, 2012 at 8:48 pm

Oh, really? How do you explain the Kama Sutra then? It’s one of the oldest sex manuals on earth….and it came from India. ;-)

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Themanhimself October 26, 2012 at 5:16 am

Then from where come 1.2 billions Indians? maybe by cloning?

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Terrence Clarke September 14, 2013 at 4:12 pm

You’re one of the reasons why India is still in the 17th century!

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Sharell शारेल July 16, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Here’s a new perspective:

http://www.womensweb.in/2012/07/sex-and-older-women/

“Her interest in sex had waned and she could not cope with her husband’s desire. Her daughters had grown up, both sons were married and it annoyed her that at the age of 65 her husband still expected to have some private time with her. The way he behaved at times was shameful. Moving out was perhaps the only way to keep her husband off limits. She often wondered if it was the same in other households. Were other women in their late fifties subjected to unwanted sex the way she was?”

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S August 20, 2012 at 6:53 pm

Hello,

Nice blog. I would just like to say that it is difficult to generalise on this issue. I believe you have been surveying really uneducated people. And I also do not understand the obsession with some people from the west towards conducting surveys, especially when they cannot understand the cultural reasons correctly (that is true even when they are living in India and married to an Indian). Your ideas are influenced by the family you are married into. You tend to think “all Indians” are like them. Non-Indian people will get a very limited and maybe a wrong idea from your blog.

Best wishes,

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D August 25, 2012 at 10:53 am

Guys,

Stop making generalizations about Indians and only having sex to have kids. I am a happily married Indian woman, my husband is also Indian, we have a very healthy sex life, exciting, enjoyable, etc. We have one child, which was planned (this was 5 years ago), and use protection, from IUDs, to condoms, to OCPs, etc. I am saying this because one person indicated that a couple didnt understand the purpose of condoms. I am pretty sure you would come across people from the western world with these same tendencies, it’s absolutely ridiculous how people are still making generalizations!

The majority of the Indian couples we know have a very healthy sex life! I don’t know who you guys are associating with, but you need to meet other people, from different classes!

There’s a reason the Kama sutra originated from India!

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Omkara April 14, 2013 at 9:26 am

Lucky you. However, you have no way of knowing what the ‘majority’ is like, not any better than the author. most couples I know are in pretty dire straits. It is also pretty common that the average Indian physique (note, average) is one of the worst.

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Sahil October 6, 2012 at 10:25 pm

A very interesting thread. I’m a 29-year old married Bengali Indian man and would like to add that based on my own experiences and observations from surroundings, many Indian couples, even the young ones in their 20′s and 30′s, absolutely lack creativity when it comes to sex. Sex becomes a mundane, boring affair and the woman usually loses interest as her husband does not know how to give intimacy. This problem becomes worse due to joint family surroundings, genuine lack of privacy, children and the pressures at work. Most Indians, especially in large cities, work long and extended hours, that leaves little energy for sex. Week-ends are at best a time for travelling together to parties or meeting friends/family/relatives/attending weddings….even when Indian couples check themselves in a hotel room in a nice resort, they bring a lot of baggage from work and scarcely find a moment of intimacy. The truth remains that the married life of at least 70-80% of Indian couples absolutely sucks! For 15-18%, it may be slightly better but nowhere to the degree of sexual freedom people enjoy in the West or even Islamic countries. Only 1-5% Indian urban Hindu couples, I believe, the really lucky ones, get to enjoy GOOD SEX for a long time. But, I doubt that the figures may be even that high. On the contrary, I think Muslims are far less prudish about sex than Hindus as Quran encourages married couples to enjoy sex as much as possible, it’s not a taboo topic unlike Indian society. Even Indian Muslims are much more sexually satisfied than their Hindu counterparts. For a land that invented Kama Sutra, India is today more prudish than Victorian England or any other sexually repressed society in history.

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Omkara April 14, 2013 at 9:34 am

true on most counts. I think most non-big-city Indian girls are encouraged to grow up to be ‘good girls’ and never ever discuss sex even in their late teens.

I have heard the joke (might have some element of truth in it) that India population is so high because,
1. Indians do not know how to enjoy any sex other than penetrative sex, and
2. often the girls are so lacking in creativity, curiosity, or collaborative spiirit to make condom-ed sex pleasurable.

So the guys resort to condom-less penetrative sex, and that too quick got-to-get-it-over-with exercises, and guess what, babies result!

Not to mention the fact that Indian guys are often so chauvinistic and conservative that any girl who is remotely curious about sex or good in bed is eyed with some suspicion or labeled a whore (randi). God help the wife who actually shows some interest in sex other than just lying there.. So it is a vicious circle or sort.

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Smritilekha Chakraborty September 30, 2013 at 10:25 am

So true! I for one, have been quite the ‘man-eater’ & really, most Indian men do not know how to do it! You can see the proof of it everywhere; on the walls, in the trains everywhere you’ll find advertisements of quacks trying to whack you out of your ‘sex problems’!

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rajkiran January 22, 2013 at 12:37 pm

indians do arrange marriage mostly thats the resons why they lack sex if they got love marriage 100% sure they are the best in sex and their sex life

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ritu Arjun January 26, 2013 at 12:02 am

Bailadila was dropped on earth by aliens they couldn’t stand his ignorance)
The blog as I understand is an observation. It is not criticizing the Indian culture. it is not a generalization of the entire population. It may be true for some and not for others.

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Nick Naylor February 12, 2013 at 9:12 pm

Sharrell, i commend the topic you’ve taken up and i like that you havent been judgemental.

Full disclosure: I’m a (hopefully) well educated Indian NRI now back in India, well travelled, married guy going through a bit of lull in my sex life of late. I’ve been reading a lot of the comments below out of curiosity & my lord a good portion is pretty childish and unidimensional.

I think its fair to say that sex is a complication emotion & subject — sexual problems vary from culture to culture …biggest levers being time, money, society, attitudes, physical constraints. There are plenty of people in western cultures that have dysfunctional sex lives & relationships, plenty of people in conservative/developing cultures that have roaring ones! Let’s not misuse statistics & perceptions and create a silly, immature khichdi.
Most importantly, lets pls not use what Times Of India quotes/write and give them credibility! TOI is freakin’ soft po*n

I dont have stats & hence wont pretend to be an expert like some posters here, but my gut tells me educated couples (married or otherwise) probably better relationships & sex — whether they’re in Aus, US, India or Timbuktoo. A look at stats on education by regions/culture could probably start to give one a more layered understanding of the issue

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Arnab Roy April 27, 2013 at 3:04 am

Hello everyone my name is Arnab.I m Bengali but I m Bourn and raised in the North East India.and we are way too much different then the rest of the county in every way.one example….condoms are available in local small shops who sale grocery items.women can freely walk on the roads alone even in the nigh time.and we dont have reserved seats in bus for women.coz we believe in equality in both gender.violence and crime against women are undoubtedly low over here.I will request to the blogger to come over here and see it by her own eyes.

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Prasad April 28, 2013 at 8:22 am

Very nice article! I am a male, ours is arranged marriage and we are out of our hometown / State for work. We are having a pretty good & healthy, faithful sex life. Not like so intensive like west, wkends mean sex, not like that. Very sensual, understanding and tried to enjoy as much as we can while respecting each others’ desires / fantasies. At the outset, I have discussed with many good & close friends about how much satisfying is their marriage life. Many of them like it very much and even think that physical affinity between the couple is wonderful. Even old parents are understanding this and they are minimizing their distractions on the privacy of couple in simple matters like they volunteer to sleep in living room / hall in a 1-Bed-hall-kitchen house. India is a vast country and we have a terrible mix on levels of education, social-development, awareness and prosperity. It simply depends on how much encouragement you have to discuss with your spouse if something is not going right or frustrating. I do agree that there are some couples, even in educated class having problems with marital life. Like one happened in my colleagues’ life. He is a very good personality, caring, affectionate for his family. But when he got married a status seeking girl, his life went into frustrating times and finally he applied for divorce. They had a good life at start, problems began when his wife started to ask when he would buy a flat, a car, a LED etc… When these problems frustrated them it slowly shun their basic love for each other and you can understand need for sex got killed even before it arises!

Yes, Indian families do have problems with intimate relationships between married couples in some %, but it is certainly changing as the society evolves!

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Dictator May 20, 2013 at 2:52 pm

“violence and crime against women are undoubtedly low over here.”…..did u forget the Delhi incident?

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Dr. Ram June 19, 2013 at 7:49 am

Indians are not homogenous race. They are very diverse. In my family I have many married into English families, Americans and Russians. I am an Indian but married to a beautiful American lady who is a blend of German and English/Scottish. I now live in the US and we both teach in an universities. As for sex we have at least three times a week if not more. Who initiates sex whether she or me, there is no rule. Sometimes she and sometimes me. If she gets up early she initiates and we enjoy. Stop generalizing and learn about India much better than you now know. Read books by the leading publishers Harper and Collins or Penguin and not thrash or those written by rif-raffs

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Sharell शारेल September 4, 2013 at 11:06 am

Heheheheheh, thanks for the laugh today!

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Smritilekha Chakraborty September 30, 2013 at 10:28 am

That is exactly what I’m talking about. These ads are everywhere in India; in the train, on the walls, everywhere.
This alone gives you an idea of the sex-life of Indians!
Jai ho….

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Ramya September 8, 2013 at 7:53 am

http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/sex-survey-indian-men-women-men-health-survey-secrets/1/305194.html

http://www.lovematters.info/indian-he-men-stuck-past-sex

the correct version – STOP BASHING THE INDIAN MEN…..!!

Indian men are the biggest ‘machos’, in everything from sex to housework.

Eighty-six percent of them think jobs like changing diapers are strictly for women. More worryingly, nearly a quarter confess to committing sexual violence, like forcing a partner to have sex. The findings come in a six-nation study by the International Centre for Research on Women.

Men need sex more than women do. They don’t talk about sex, they just do it. And they’re always ready to have sex. This was the take on sexuality of around six out of ten Indian men. It’s a higher proportion of men agreeing with these views than in any of the other countries surveyed except Rwanda.

Violence
The testosterone-heavy take on sex all too easily translates into sexual violence, the survey suggests. Twenty-four percent of the Indian men surveyed say they’ve been sexually violent at some point in their lives. And 20 percent say at some time they’ve forced their partner to have sex – 14 percent in the last year.

By way of comparison, just one percent of men in Brazil say they’ve been sexually violent towards a partner, three percent in Mexico, and four percent in Rwanda, Croatia and Chile.

The Indian men’s violence against women isn’t just sexual, the survey found. Sixty-five percent say they think women sometimes deserve to be beaten. Sixty-eight percent say a woman should put up with a violent husband for the sake of the family.

Macho
Latin America might be the home of ‘machismo’, but the Indian men appear to do more justice to the word than their Latin counterparts. Nine out of ten say they would be prepared to fight for their reputation if they were insulted – a higher proportion than in any of the other countries, including Mexico and Chile.

Almost nine out of ten think childcare jobs like changing diapers are strictly for women. And nine out of ten say they feel uncomfortable around homosexual men, and would be ashamed if their son were gay.

Bedroom pleasure
The macho attitude is evident in the bedroom, and not just in terms of sexual violence. Nine out of ten think a man should feel embarrassed if he can’t get an erection. And 47 percent say they would be “outraged” if their wife asked them to use a condom – again a higher proportion than in the other five countries.

There’s a clear link between bedroom pleasure and household chores, the study found. Men are more likely than women to say they are happy with their sex lives in nearly all the countries surveyed. But both the man and woman are more likely to be sexually satisfied if a couple has a more equal relationship, and the man also joins in with the housework. The more unequal the relationship, the bigger the gap between the man’s and woman’s level of sexual and relationship satisfaction.

Satisfaction
But here India surprisingly bucks the trend. Despite the fact that men and women stick firmly to traditional roles, both Indian men and women report the highest levels of sexual satisfaction of all the six countries. Ninety-eight percent of Indian men say they’re sexually satisfied in their relationship, and 97 percent of Indian women.

However, ‘sexual satisfaction’ is a hard thing to measure, the researchers point out. After all, going by the figures, some of these ‘satisfied’ women must have been forced to have sex by their partners in the last year alone.

Keeping up
Indian men seem to be the keenest to keep men and women’s roles exactly the way they are. More than half feel that men lose out when women’s rights are promoted. In the other countries, around 90 percent of men disagree with them.

India’s mushrooming economy is bringing a flood of new opportunities for women, but the researchers conclude that men just aren’t keeping up with the pace.

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Ramya September 8, 2013 at 8:10 am

http://geography.about.com/od/culturalgeography/a/geographyofsex.htm

hOPE YOU AGREE TO IT……..

Published in 2000, the 128 page The Penguin Atlas of Human Sexual Behavior contains a plethora of facts and data about sex and sexuality worldwide. Unfortunately, the data used in the atlas was not often available for each country in the world so the author, Dr. Judith Mackay, was left to map incomplete data which is sometimes from as few as a dozen or so counties. Nonetheless, the book provides a fascinating insight into the cultural geography of sex and reproduction.

The Dark Side

The atlas also covers the negative aspects of sex and sexuality. A map shows that female genital excision is highest in the countries of northeast Africa – Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Somalia.

Rapes per 100,000 women mapped out shows that among others – the U.S., Canada, Australia, southern Africa, Sweden have the world’s highest rates of rape (over 4 per 10,000).

A map of the legal status of homosexuality around the world tells us that many countries in northern Africa and the Middle East can punish homosexual sex acts with the death penalty.

We also learn that adultery is punishable by death in Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen.

Overall, The Penguin Atlas of Human Sexual Behavior is a very interesting compilation and reference for facts about human sexual behavior and reproduction worldwide and I do recommend it for students of cultural geography or sexology.

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Rashmi September 9, 2013 at 10:15 pm

>>>>> Rapes per 100,000 women mapped out shows that among others – the U.S., Canada, Australia, southern Africa, Sweden have the world’s highest rates of rape (over 4 per 10,000).

<<<<<< IS THIS TRUE ???

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Sharell शारेल September 10, 2013 at 10:00 am

These countries may have the highest reported rapes, but rapes commonly go unreported in India. Hence the reason for India’s low statistics. It doesn’t mean that less rapes are happening in India at all.

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Mohit Gupta September 14, 2013 at 5:09 pm

Rapes go unreported all over the world even in US home to feminist movement. Why single out India?

And if the rapes go unreported, how did you know of them in first place? what is the sources of your such information?

The fact is that India is at 53rd place in the number of rapes even when it has many a times population than US/South Africa and Sweden.

I don’t like such argument of “unreported rapes”.,

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Sharell शारेल September 14, 2013 at 6:32 pm

Of course you don’t like such an arguement. Who would? May people choose to be in denial about it. However, the fact is it’s a huge issue and one that even the Indian government acknowledges: http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/tp-newdelhi/majority-of-rape-cases-go-unreported-mps/article5063089.ece

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Tamasha the Choto Rani September 14, 2013 at 8:43 pm

There might well be more rapes in countries other than India.
But the sheer brutality of the rapes in India reported is far beyond anything I’ve ever heard of in any country.
Pouring petrol/kerosene on the victim & setting fire to her, slitting her throat, disembowelment, stabbing/cutting of breasts, tearing/ripping the perineum (tissue between anus & vagina), pouring acid on the victim, running the victim over with a vehicle, etc.
It’s just inhuman & terrifying the torture beyond the actual rape that occurs in India.
By the way there aren’t any statistics on incidences of gang-rapes in any country – so whether India leads the world in gang-rapes is unknown.

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umots October 10, 2013 at 1:49 pm

“But the sheer brutality of the rapes in India reported is far beyond anything I’ve ever heard of in any country.”
That is not even an argument, but an empirical assertion based on your rather limited observations AND understanding of the world.

I don’t like the way this discussion is going and I can see why some Indians will be unwilling to acknowledge the pervasity of rapes in India, given how you and your ilk try to twist it into yet another ‘my country is better than yours’ mudslinging.

Take the tortures you mentioned for example – just because you don’t have the impartiality to ‘hear’ anything contrary to your ASSumptions, does not argue that such barbarity is unique to Indians. Have you studied or documented the brutality of the US forces in Iraq, Vietnam and Kosovo? The sexual perversity of American tourists in South East Asia and Latin America? Or closer to your home, the depravity of anti-immigration vigilantes?

Human barbarism transcends political boundaries, and it is no more apparent than the few examples of barbarism by the so called ‘civilised’ societies, when there is a marked absence of the rule of law (or any socio-moral enforcement mechanisms).

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Padparadscha October 14, 2013 at 8:53 pm

And rapes are also used routinely and on purpose in war zones, in some African countries for example, or in the recent past in Sri Lanka.

I remember reading once what happens to a woman who has been repeatedly gangraped ; basically she cannot stop urinating and defecating as the muscles and fleshes are totally ruined. And very often she is rejected by her family.

No, rapes and tortures should not be used as a means to boast about one’s culture or criticize other people’s cultures.

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Amit Desai October 15, 2013 at 10:37 am

This is because every country has its share of Tamasha and Narad-munis who hype up the whole issue as if rape is an issue of gossip. Such women are the biggest culprit for suffering of other women. Politicians and human/women rights advocates, who are also females in India are another useless fellows who talk about plans and steps to be taken. Awareness, improving boys’ mentality and all that crap that even Sharell posts.

Solution is simple and fast: Weaponization of all Indian women, especially the vulnerable ones.

A desi gun (aka katta) can be made for as low as 10 $ in India. Either train women to make such weapons or provide them kattas for free. If that woman on the bus of Delhi-gang rape had a gun, she would have been alive today, possibly unraped. And another woman has tried her best to protect that 17.5 yr old culprit. Of course, she is a woman who sympathizes with rapists way more than she does with victims.

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Raj September 16, 2013 at 3:05 pm

Rapes are happening all over the world with U.S ranking right on top of the list followed by South africa and many other african/asian countries but the amount of coverage India is getting is mind boggling. Infact, the only news I see about India in International media these days is about rape.

For example, there was an incident in melbourne recently where a 27 year old married, pregnant woman was raped and murdered while she was going to work by an 18 year old man. There was hardly any mention of the incident in the media. There is wide spread sexual abuse and violence against children in churches across australia and the australian government has commissioned a royal enquiry in to the practice, and the figures are expected to be in thousands. Not much coverage on this either except an occasional update on the investigations.

Speaking of gang rapes, US had a gang rape of a teenager by 4 men just after the delhi incident and mexico is notorious for them. Last year, the ex mayor of mexico city was kidnapped infront of her children in broad day light and then raped, tortured, murdered and her mutilated body thrown in the fields. Two days ago a gang rape incident in beijing, China involving 6 men. Mysteriously not much international media coverage on these either.

I am sure the numbers will be much more in a country like India with large population. Why India is being singled out? Because of the coverage it got for the delhi incident and since then the excess international media attention it got. Its all good If all this media attention leads to some change in the situation but I don’t see that happening. Other than sensationalist media coverage and the subsequent debates/discussions, I am afraid it’s not really serving any purpose.

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Smritilekha Chakraborty September 30, 2013 at 10:37 am

Rashmi, that is the funniest thing I’ve ever heard..
Do you know, what is rape in India? A simple ‘forceful Peno-vaginal interaction’! What if the ‘forceful penetration’ is Oral or Anal? That is not considered to be ‘rape’ in India! However, in many of the above mentioned countries (USA, UK, France etc.) it is considered to be ‘rape’!
But of course, in a country like India ‘rape’ is the victim’s shame & hence most of the cases go unreported; whereas in the European countries women have a better chance of reporting these cases.
You see the connection, right? Pakistan has a lot lesser ‘rape’s than India, that does not mean that the incident of ‘rape’ is lesser there; it just means there are even fewer women bringing it to the notice of the authorities.
So please, take your stupid comments elsewhere!

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Manny October 14, 2013 at 11:31 pm

Chakraborty? Bengali?

“Pakistan has a lot lesser ‘rape’s than India”?

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Ramya September 8, 2013 at 8:11 am

So rapes are Rampant everywhere not only in india…… sad.

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rationalbeing September 13, 2013 at 10:30 am

The article is very much relevant in every sense.India is a nation of hypocrites who have tall talks and big claims.For ‘mera bharat mahan’-we donot want to accept simple truths and our faults/limitations.Discussing sex or sex education is still a taboo in india.Indian family structure ,values and culture demands progeny/ continuation of generation and sacrifice in all the way while being very less respective to sexual needs /intimacy/privacy of married couples.We talk more about duties less about other aspects of life.Indian women are kept is such a way that they remain sati-satvi or good girls who tend to remain innocent without having much knowledge about sex and physical needs.The so called indian morality of dignity of women and gender bias keep all the things out of reach.As joint families are breaking and Indians have become interested in small family,the things are getting changed.The emerging middle class and higher middle class in metros or big cities are changing the dynamics though the change is very slow.Internet has played a great role to change the mindset as most of the indian youths especially in cities and towns are well aware about pornography though pornography is not always a healthy substitute of sex education.Sexual oppression is rampant in india-indian censor boards hardly allow adult movies in the name of protection of dignity of women.Where female infanticide,malnutrition in women,dowry, illiteracy,domestic violence,sexual offences are so rampant or has become inalienable part and parcel of Indian lives,how someone can expect progressive attitude towards sex life over there.

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Ravi tharode December 29, 2013 at 1:29 am

We had a/c in only one room. My parents want kids to be comfortable. So they let me and brother to sleep in the same room compromising their sex life every summer. They are so used to a/c that they cant sleep without it.

No one taught me anything about sex. I didn’t understand I shouldn’t sleep with my parents even after I was 10yrs old.

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ramn January 6, 2014 at 1:02 pm

very interesting blog going on…i really found several clips in it such as
“one person indicated that a couple didnt understand the purpose of condoms”

that was not couple…it said by french lady that tamil guesthouse guy says he do not know condom. i can gurantees that guy just telling lie to french lady because he think if he will say he do not know condom..she might wana show him what is condom then he will ask how to use it and how to operate it…he wana complete practical work…the guy wana hook this french lady so he saying like this…i tell you there in india so many guys they wana talk with foreigner lady. they wana hook-up with them and pretend that he do not know anythings..then lady will make them happy. it in hindi says “eda ban ke peda kha raha” means he pretending knowing nothing but he know and just wana hook some one to laid on bed.

i don’t know how these french ladies got man who do not have good interest on sex. i am an indian..i have intimation about more than 10 foreign ladies…i usually travel some contried due to my work. i do have relationship as friend with several foreign ladies. never pay of sex with foreigners. all of the girl till now i laid with them..they still missing and want me. many of them wana marriage with me. this only because they was fully satisfied by me..they say it openly …how much i make happy they never got from any boys…

till now i had..chinese, japanese, philipino, russian, kazakhstan, brazilian girls..they all still in contact to meet me…wana marry me.

the conclusion it that we should not make false concept by looking some guys…there is several play boys exist in india also..who can satisfy in all ways to girl..and they do it.

please do not blame every one for problems exist with your boyfriend or husband or friend. everyone could not have same problem.

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siva March 11, 2014 at 4:28 pm

sex is not for business .

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Flynn Rider April 10, 2014 at 8:16 am

There is a married Indian woman I work with whom I’m very attracted to (I’m married too). I really want her to be my lover, and she even told me that he husband will be in India for two months, I’m very tempted to “visit” her apartment for a cup of tea. The only thing holding me back, is if she open to me being her lover while her husband is away. In Japan it is much more acceptable than the USA. I hope she makes the first move!

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raj April 23, 2014 at 1:24 pm

What is this. How lady will make a first move. If you are scared leave her otherwise u make the first move

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don April 12, 2014 at 10:06 pm

Who has high population ?
India and China so no one can deny lot more sex happened in. This nation than other .

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don April 12, 2014 at 10:11 pm

Its highly unbelievable that couple don’t know what condom do as state in article.
Assuming blogger. Live in maha. She need to cheek Maharashtra state board
8th ,9the ,10th science curriculum. With clear notice to teach teen about sex education at schoOl
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