Millennials aren’t putting sex first, and the media is ON IT.
A new study published in the ambiguously sex-neutral-sounding Archives of Sexual Behavior “finds that younger millennials—born in the 1990s—are more than twice as likely to be sexually inactive in their early 20s as the previous generation was. Even older millennials are more sexually active than this younger group is,” researchers concluded. Broadly, the generation spanning from the early ‘80s to the turn of the century even “have fewer sexual partners than the baby boomers and those in Generation X, the group immediately preceding them.”
Naturally, this news has some freaking out about how all those millennial stereotypes are true—the passivity, the aimlessness, the childishness, the retreat into all that’s protective and safe. After all, the safest kind of sex is no sex at all, right?
Then again, this is no sea change: even these “immature” kids are still mostly sleeping around. And it doesn’t take a PhD in sex science to understand that there’s a certain kind of profound maturity in realizing that Tinder has really gone downhill and sexual “partners” often don’t even work that well together at getting it on.
It’s still weird for people in sexually empowered older generations—who really, really don’t want to feel old yet—to watch kids without much of an interest in starting families shed their interest in starting to get laid, too. But if there’s a lesson about human biology in here, it’s probably going to take a few more “shocking” studies to really shake up the settled views of the great American sex-happy single thirtysomething.