It is a cliche of sex and sexuality that each new generation shocks the last. Since time im memoriam society has been constantly becoming more liberal, having more sex, with more people and in more outlandish ways; leaving the generation above clutching its pearls and expressing horror at the debauched youth they have raised.
Edwardians shocked their Vic torian parents with open marriages. Then they became scandalised themselves by their own children who became the first generation in the sixties to make the contraceptive pill mainstream. Then the midcentury enfant terribles later became parents themselves and were shocked by LGBT identities in the 1980s and 1990s.
Millennials, however, are re versing this trend as one of the first generations on record to actually be having less sex than their parents did at the same age.
Millennials are the generation which reached young adulthood around 2000. A number of characteristics mark them out: They are saddled with student debt, they came of working age amid a crashing world economy and they use the internet with greater intensity than any other age group.
A recent US government study found that just 44% of teenage girls have had sex, compared to 58% 25 years ago. For boys, only 47% have had sex, compared to 69% among their parents when they were at the same age.
In another study ,it has been found that millennials are not only less likely to have had sex, but have fewer sexual partners than their parents’ generation at the same age.
She said that a unique mix of social circumstances could be causing the social shift for millennials. Following the financial crash, millennials work longer hours, in less secure work and are more likely to live with flatmates or family members amid soaring rents. She said: It’s like being a young teen again, trying to figure out where to get some privacy .
There have been cases in the media of some young men saying that pornography has made it difficult for them to have sex with a real woman. Millennials are certainly more likely to have sexual contact with people they find attractive rather than a specific gender.
Research suggests the trend is here to stay for now at least, with data plateauing at these low levels and no return spike yet emerging.