The study finds that from 2000 to 2018, almost one in three young American men between the ages of 18 and 24 did not report sexual activity in the previous year. Lack of sexual activity or inactivity also increased among men and women, between 25 and 34 years old during the investigation period, according to the magazine’s report Jama Network Open.
The reasons that justify this break also include stress at work and the inability to combine the profession with an intimate relationship, as well as the prevalence of other forms of entertainment alone. “There are now many options for things to do at the end of the night than before and fewer opportunities to start sexual activity if both partners are involved in social media, video games or watching series in a row,” explains Jean Twenge, from the psychology at San Diego State University, one of those responsible for the study.
When analyzing data from biennial investigations between 2000 and 2018 of almost 10,000 men and women between the ages of 18 and 44, the researchers found that 16.5% of respondents reported less sexual activity in 2016-2018 when compared to 9.5% who gave the same answer in 2000-2002, mainly among single heterosexual men.
Sexual activity remained virtually unchanged among single women, just as there was no noticeable drop among men gay, adds the study.
Unemployed or lower-income men are more likely to be sexually inactive, as are boys and girls who are still studying. Given the preference for men of higher socioeconomic status and the greater number of women with higher education than men, some young people may find it difficult to have heterosexual relationships, note those responsible for the study.
“Higher income can mean having more resources to look for partners and, on the other hand, it can be considered more desirable by these partners”, explains Peter Ueda, from the Institute Karolinska, in Sweden, co-author of the study.
Outside the study period, the covid-19 pandemic, which contributed to unemployment, as well as fear of being infected, could increase this trend. The consequences of the outbreak on sexual relations are an issue that deserves to be monitored, argues Ueda.