Millennials, take a moment to soak in this new study. We’re living in a world with Tinder and Grindr, and yet somehow all it’s done is make us “more tolerant to premarital sex” than previous generations. According to a news study, published in The Archives of Sexual Behavior and summarized in Time, millennials are actually having less sex than our parents.
Boomers and Gen X’ers (anyone born in the 1950s and 1960s — hi, Mom and Dad!) had the highest average of sexual partners – an average of 11 sexual partners as adults. Those born in the ’40s or ’70s averaged 10 sexual partners. Millennials, by comparison, are only averaging eight sexual partners.
However, millennials did manage to beat out the “Greatest Generation” (those born in the Great Depression who then fought in World War II). Our poor grandparents averaged two partners each. Didn’t they suffer enough?
“Although millennials are more tolerant of these behaviors, they’re not taking that is license to sleep around,” report author Jean Twenge, who also wrote Generation Me, told Time. Since millennials are “much more safety-conscious” than previous generations, it’s possible that concerns about HIV and STDs are responsible for their comparative chastity.
The study also found that we as a society consider premarital sex much less taboo. A majority (58%) of the 33,000 people in the study said that premarital sex was acceptable – a landslide compared to 28% in 1972. Acceptance for homosexuality has increased as well — from 11% in 1973 to 44% in 2012.
“What you might see when millennials are discussing these issues with their boomer parents is that millennials are more permissive of sexuality,” Twenge said, “but boomers might have to shut their mouths about how many partners they’ve had.” We can all be grateful for that.
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