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Study: The Mysterious Case of Millenials' Sexual Inactivity

Aug 03, 2016 08:51 PM EDT
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A new study revealed that millennials are less likley to have sex during their early 20's compared to Generation X.
(Photo : Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)

A new study revealed that more millennials in their early 20's are sexually inactive, compared to older generations

The study, published in the journal Archive of Sexual Behavior, showed that despite being defined as the "hookup generation", millennials were more likely to report not having sexual partners as adults, compared to Generation X and baby boomers.

Millennials are those who were born in between the early 1980's and early 2000. Generation X were those who were born in the late 1960's, while baby boomers were those who were born during the post-World War II baby boom approximately between 1946 and 1964.

For the study, the researchers examined 26,707 responses from the General Social Survey conducted between 1972 and 2014. They noted that 15 percent of the millennials in the survey have reported being sexually inactive since the age of eight, which is more than two times higher than the 6 percent of the Generation X.

Furthermore, the researchers also discovered that the shift towards higher sexual inactivity among millennials was more pronounced among women and absent among black Americans and those with college education.

Stephanie Coontz, director of research at the Council on Contemporary Families, noted that withholding sex is not necessary bad for relationships. Instead, it can even lead to stronger relationships in the long run and empower women to say no.

"As people have gotten much more accepting of all sorts of forms of consensual sex, they've also gotten more picky about what constitutes consent," Coontz told Washington Post. "We are far less accepting of pressured sex."

Experts believe that the increase in sexual inactivity among millennials can be attributed to multiple factors. Many millennials in their early 20's are still living with their parent, making sex less accessible. Other factors may include education, career, social standing and fear of STDs. The rise of technological advances that allows people to communicate with others and entertain themselves might also influenced the sexual inactivity of the millennials.

However, the study did not clearly identify sex. Some people may only classify vaginal intercourse as sex and exclude oral and anal sex.

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