Less sex, more housework for retirees

LOS ANGELES Thu Dec 4, 2008 1:07pm EST

An elderly woman waits to be sworn in as a U.S. citizen during a naturalization ceremony in Pomona, near Los Angeles, California October 25, 2006. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

An elderly woman waits to be sworn in as a U.S. citizen during a naturalization ceremony in Pomona, near Los Angeles, California October 25, 2006.

Credit: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Life after retirement means less sex and more housework but most Americans who have given up working say they are happier, according to a survey released on Wednesday.

Sleep and watching television also goes up, but 38 percent of the 55-75 year olds questioned in the survey by senior citizen group AARP for its magazine said that retirement had made their relationship stronger.

Sex seems to take the biggest hit, despite the increase in leisure time after retirement. Some 25 percent of men and 19 percent of women said they had less sex than when they were working.

Housework, one of the biggest bugbears of coupledom, appears just as troublesome in retirement with men and women having different views of how much they do.

Although 80 percent of men who are retired said they believed they had increased their share of household chores, only 47 percent of women still working agreed that their retired menfolk were doing more.

Despite the different perceptions, 74 percent of those questioned said they were happier having retired, compared to 21 percent who said there was more tension in their marriage.

AARP (formerly known as the American Association of Retired Persons) The Magazine has a circulation of about 34 million and is seen as the voice of Americans 50 years and older.

The survey, conducted in November, consisted of 1,064 adults between 55-75 who were retired themselves or whose partners were retired.

(Editing by Belinda Goldsmith, Reporting by Jill Serjeant)

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