2006 Love, Sex & Self-Image Poll

Would you rather give up sex or conversation with your husband? How far would you go to lose 25 pounds? Would you cheat on your husband if you could get away with it? See how 529 women across the country answered these provocative questions.
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How Happy Is Your Marriage?

Question: If you could get away with one transgression in your marriage without risking your husband's love, what would it be?

You're a group with a lot of integrity. Sixty-one  percent of you would not commit any transgression, even if you could get away with it. Younger women were even more emphatic than older ones: 71 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds wouldn't misbehave. Besides, say 21 percent of you, none of the bad behaviors we mentioned would cost you your husband's love in any case.

On the menu of possible misbehaviors, here's what a few of you said you'd do:

Drain your nest egg of $10,000 to splurge on whatever you wanted: 5 percent
Eat whatever you wanted for a year, even if it meant doubling your weight: 4 percent (This was most appealing to those of you who are ages 45 to 54)
Indulge in a brief, torrid affair: 1 percent

Question: If you knew then what you know now about your husband, would you still marry him?

Ninety percent of you said yes. By the time you're 65 or older, you may have second thoughts; only 78 percent of you say yes.

Question: Who do you believe is happier in your marriage -- you or your husband?

Both of us: 50 percent
Him: 21 percent
Me: 17 percent

Women in households making $25,000 or less and Northeastern women are the most certain that he's happier (39 percent and 36 percent, respectively).

Question: Which would you consider the more serious blow to the health of your marriage?

My husband having a yearlong sexless affair of the heart: 52 percent
My husband having a loveless one-night stand: 22 percent

After you turn 65, your numbers flip. You are more likely to object to a physical affair than an emotional one.

If you're the cheater, your opinion splits more evenly. The more serious blow to your marriage is an affair of the heart for 37 percent, while 32 percent feel it's a one-night stand. The younger you are, the more you worry about your own purely emotional affair.

Question: Have you been attracted to someone else's husband in your circle?

No, say 80 percent of you. Most likely to admit someone else turned your head were married women ages 18 to 34 (27 percent) and 45 to 54 (24 percent), along with women in the South and West. Ninety-eight percent of those who copped to ogling say they've never acted on those attractions, though women 35 to 44 and those in households making more than $75,000 were most likely to make a move (11 percent and 10 percent).

Question: What would you like to change about your husband?

Not a thing, say 43 percent of you. Of those who would tinker, ditching the potbelly led the list (17 percent), especially for women 45 to 54 (28 percent) and those in the Northeast (24 percent). Another 13 percent wished he were more buff in general, which was most desired by 18- to 34-year-olds (19 percent).

Question: Do you still think your husband is "the one"?

Ninety-seven percent of you overall said yes.

Continued on page 2:  Single or Married: Who Envies Whom?


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