Fewer People Have Sex Than You Think

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Fewer People Have Sex Than You Think

-By Caleb Jones

Sexual imagery is all over the place, more so now than at any point in human history. Billboards, TV, movies, the internet, magazine covers, book covers, your phone...you can't escape it.

This bombardment of image tricks people into thinking that everyone's having sex all the time. In fact, the opposite is true.

I've said before that Americans love looking at sexual imagery but don't actually have a lot of sex. Here's a few recent stats to demonstrate what I'm talking about.

1. 57 percent of men and 51 percent of women ages 18 to 24 have not had sex in the last year. [*] An entire year without sex! HALF of "young people!"

2. What about those older people? Well, sadly, most those older people are married, which means they ain't gettin' any either. People living with a sexual partner masturbate more as compared to people who don't. About 85% of such men and 45% of such women had masturbated in the last year, compared to a separate study which found that only 60% of men and 40% of women overall had done the same in that time period.[*]  Most people wouldn't have increased masturbation if they were getting laid all the time.

3. I have talked before about studies that clearly indicate married couples in the 1940s were having way more sex than married couples now. [*]

4. People age 16-44 are having 24% less sex than they were just 10 years ago. [*].

5. White people and Asians really don't like daily sex. 10% of blacks and Hispanics report having sex "every night or almost every night," but only 4% of white people report the same, compared to only 1% of Asians. [*] By the way, none of that surprises me at all; the more uptight the race, the less sex. Makes sense.

6. I shouldn't pick on us Americans. What about our Canadian brothers to the north? 43% of Canadians would choose bacon or over sex. [*] Jesus.

I could go on, but you get the point.

If you factor in the massive amount of people not having sex at all, and those only having sex sporadically, then if you actually have sex on a regular basis you're literally an exception to the rule. Isn't that strange? It doesn't seem like that, looking at all the sexual imagery all around us, but it's true.

I have sex an average of around three times a week, even with an extremely packed-in schedule. I'm just guessing here, but this frequency, which I don't even consider that frequent, places me easily in the top 5%-10% of humanity in terms of sexual frequency. If you compare me to just white American people, I'm probably in the top 3%. And I'm not bragging because I'll say it again: I don't think three times a week is very frequent. I know plenty of people (mostly those in new relationships in the temporary NRE phase) who have sex way more often than that.

Granted, people having sex three times a week or more are usually in temporary states. In other words, they're having sex four times a week now, but they won't be continually having sex that frequently and consistently for almost 10 years in a row like I have. That may explain some of these stats: people have sex frequently in surges, then go through long dry spells or low periods. Men and women like myself who have sex frequently and consistently for years and years on end are more rare.

My point is, people like me weren't rare historically. They've become rare only in the last few decades. People, particularly white Westerners, just aren't having a lot of sex anymore.

Again, you would have no idea this is the case with the constant bombardment of boobs and lipstick and asses and abs you see everywhere you look in pop culture.

It is my hypothesis that the reason for the increase in sexual imagery is because of the decrease in actual sex. I think these two things are directly linked. I am reasonably convinced that in most free cultures, the less people having sex, the more sexual imagery you'll publicly see. If people aren't getting laid, you'll see more sexy stuff. If people are getting laid a lot, you'll see much less.

Two pieces of evidence to support my theory:

1. In the United States, sexual imagery has strongly increased in the last 40 years while actual sexual activity has sharply decreased. Yes, this could be correlation vs causation, but here's my next piece of evidence:

2. Japan. As I've talked about before, young people in Japan have damn near flat-out stopped having sex, and it's getting worse every year. Yet when I go to Japan I see far more big-tit and big-cleavage imagery than in any other country I've ever visited, the US included. From computer games to animation to posters to commercials to sexy girls in push-up bras standing on street corners advertising local businesses, damn! I thought *I* liked big boobs, but those Japanese are way more into the funbags than me...yet they're not having sex.


I could be wrong about this, but I think I'm onto something. If in the US (or Europe or Canada) people actually got over their addiction to internet porn (men!) or self-righteous ASD (women!) and actually started having more sex, you'd see less sexual imagery all over the place. People wouldn't need it, because they'd actually be getting laid.

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This article was originally published on April 30, 2015
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  • ricerocket 2015-04-30 10:19:25

    Granted, people having sex three times a week or more are usually in temporary states. In other words, they’re having sex four times a week now, but they won’t be continually having sex that frequently and consistently for almost 10 years in a row like I have. That may explain some of these stats: people have sex frequently in surges, then go through long dry spells or low periods. Men and women like myself who have sex frequently and consistently for years and years on end are more rare.
    Interesting article, and timely, as just last night, I had sex with a woman who has not had sex in 1.5 years!  The most I have gone in the past few years is about a month, and more recently as I have come to embrace this lifestyle, 3-4 times a week, with different woman. I find myself more consistently happy, centered, and able to address things, such as drama, in the workplace, or from women, from a different place, without negative reaction, anger, etc. Since I have been doing this for only a short time, now, but from what I have read BD, you have that as well, consistent happiness, etc.  I don't want to speak for you, but overall, would you agree?

  • Blackdragon 2015-04-30 10:23:38

    more recently as I have come to embrace this lifestyle, 3-4 times a week, with different woman.I find myself more consistently happy, centered, and able to address things, such as drama, in the workplace, or from women, from a different place, without negative reaction, anger, etc.
    Yep. Frequent sex for a man is like a happiness potion with zero side effects. It will benefit you in may ways that are completely non-sexual.
    Since I have been doing this for only a short time, now, but from what I have read BD, you have that as well, consistent happiness, etc.  I don’t want to speak for you, but overall, would you agree?
    Yep. I have consistent happiness (as much as is possible in real life). It's the entire point of my life. As I write about in the book, there's no reason to feel any negative emotions once you're over the age of about 25 or so. (Unless you have one of those personalities that like drama.)

  • maldek 2015-04-30 14:09:37

    Here is a link (in german): Let the numbers speak for itself: http://www.theratalk.de/pressemitteilung_15.html   The study is from 2005 and from germany in europe. 13500 men and women in parships did answer this question: "How often in the last 4 weeks did you have sex"   Numbers look less horrible than the new numbers from the US you reported BD but even these numbers are not exactly great. 57% did have 1 sex per week or less 17% did not have any sex in the past 4 weeks The median is 5,6 times sex in 4 weeks, while 63% of people have less than that. Only 28% have 2 times or more sex per week    

  • AKA 2015-04-30 18:04:49

    The decrease in sexual frequency follows the increase in obesity.  People are most certainly getting fatter, and I would argue getting sicker.  Witness also the plunging testosterone levels in males.  Fat, sick people don't like to have as much sex as fully healthy people.

  • Blackdragon 2015-04-30 18:11:41

    The decrease in sexual frequency follows the increase in obesity.
    GREAT point. I hadn't considered that. I agree.

  • doclove 2015-04-30 18:59:30

    Well, of course, American people are having less sex now on average then American people in the 1940s. It should not surprise anyone. The reason for it is that secular marriage died in the 1960s Vietnam War era with the implementation of no fault divorce and the implementation of laws stating  that one could rape and sexually assault his or her spouse; before this one had to prove fault to get a divorce and there was no such thing as sexually raping and assaulting one's spouse. The less strict Christian Protestant marriage died in the 1860s American Civil War era when we went from men usually getting the home and children in a divorce to women getting the home and children. The more strict Christian Catholic marriage died in the early 1500s with the Protestant Reformation Revolt against Catholicism when divorce was introduced. The homosexual marriage being instituted today is merely mocking a dead institution which is a scam on heterosexual men. How did most people most of the time get sex in the past? They got it through marriage of course. It used to be that up until the 1960s a spouse usually the man could demand sex from the other spouse usually the wife and usually get it because in half the states in the United States with no laws on the books requiring spouses the right to have sex upon demand  it was implicitly understood that spouses had the right to have sex on demand. The other half of the states in the United States it was explicitly understood that spouses had the right to demand and get sex from their spouses because laws were enacted saying so. Men were allowed and even told to be dominant with women which worked more often than not. Women are told to be dominant with men now and it doesn't work more often than not. I am not only talking about the sex either. Add Prostitution prohibition in laws and social mores and you see even worse results. Most men either need to be married or go to willing whores with cash in order to get laid. Germany has legal prostitution. The USA except for a few counties in Nevada does not. Germany also has more affordable legal prostitution than the few counties in the state of Nevada in the USA. You see when men can say I can and will have sex with better women than you and even the whores are better women than you because they are on average better looking, better performing and more willing to have sex than you then women behave a little bit better and put out because she knows he is correct. This is implicitly understood in Germany but not the USA. Very few men can GAME or seduce women well and no matter how hard they try someone will always be better. Hypergamy is the problem. Chris Rock the actor and stand up comedian said it best. He said that when a man hears his male friend say that he has a wonderful girl the male friend will say I want a woman like that, but when a woman tells her female friend I have a wonderful man, the female friend says I WANT HIM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • lazy guy 2015-05-01 04:38:35

    Some interesting points made ... Re the connection between more obesity and less frequent sex, another factor is that many of us are inclined to seek more pleasure & satisfaction in eating, as a way to seek compensation for sexual frustration. Also we have a public which is brainwashed by consuming relentless mass media advertising which wants you craving fattening foods & drinks and wants you believing you're deprived and pitiful if you aren't indulging that desire.  A society of chubby men & women has men seeing fewer women worth pursuing and men who are less optimistic about being wanted by desirable women. What a vicious self-perpetuating cycle...

  • Kurt 2015-05-01 15:21:36

    I am most surprised by the stats on youth. When I was a college kid I went through a series of girlfriends and unattached random hookup periods. I had sexy girlfriends who were high sex drive and I remember 3X/ day MINIMUM was generally what we expected. On weekends with no classes, fuck all day and all night if we could. The only reasons I see for not doing that now is that I am a busy man with lots of work and less free time and the women I see are the same. The few times (like vacations) when I can have the luxury of that free time again and I have a willing partner I can be almost as sexually active as I was at my peak 25 years ago. So when I see the stat on youth being that sexless it sort of shocks me. It looks to me like a serious public health issue, not just some weird cultural quirk.

  • Dorian Gray 2015-05-01 22:52:01

    This is so spot on. I've been married twice and reached a point where I had zero interest in sex. I'm at the point now where I don't want to see my wife naked and do NOT want to have sex with her. As far as sexual imagery and actual sex goes, my comparison is to the person who has just eaten Thanksgiving dinner. How eager are you for images of food? On the other hand, who really wants to see images of food? --the guy who's starving. In the Philippines where I have a rich sex life, and know other guys who are in the same situation, the interest in porn is zero.

  • Nick T 2015-05-02 23:29:34

    Note that models became really skinny just as America was getting really fat.

  • Masterdev 2015-05-03 09:27:49

    Last paragraph is so true it should be in the Bible.

  • vorehes 2015-05-04 10:04:43

    Not surprised ---- I think it's the rise of technology that caused this, but I could be wrong. Men are too worried about what may offend a women and feminism and all this PC BS these days, it's like they've become castrated. That, and Facebook and video games and all this 'online' communication is like a substitute for real interactions. Obviously online dating is a different story and you do well there, but I think there are more walls there than ALREADY being in the same room as a woman you're interested in. These days people get their 'fake' social interaction in (I say that, ironically, while typing a comment here to you) .... and there's just not as much proximity. Proximity is the first prerequisite to having sex. You need to be touching each other to have it, lol.

  • Tom 2015-05-07 21:46:39

    Isn't the entire modern situation (less sex, less kids, less marriage, more women working and living independently, etc.) SOLELY due to the spread of medically safer abortions, then the Pill, then the Morning After Pill, along with better condoms and widespread distribution of condoms?  All arising and after the 1960's? The whole situation is technologically caused...that's the only major difference, yet it's a huge difference, and has upset the entire social order. Social trends were changing leading up to the 1960's, but had not these medical advances come about society might have ran on a MadMen/tradcon/1950's mode permanently...unless the mores fell into some kind of Roman infanticide/debauchery practice again...(a modern world where sex was somehow still leading to great numbers of pregnancies basically and males dominating the home life.) But modern technology and medical science brought sweeping changes.  Men chose these technologies as well, unburdened by fatherhood more, but women have had a much greater gain.  Full economic independence, reaching it's crescendo now. The world hasn't really figured out what to do with the new situation...obesity is a consequence, a depression consequence, not a cause of less sex. The causal factor of less sex is that women are now uncoupled from pregnancy after sex, a conscious choice they have which was not around pre-1960's...this leads to women more independent and working in the new societal structure, which in turn makes them even less available for sex.  A great deal of sex pre-1950's was not exactly desired by those wives, so we shouldn't assume that even if sex does make people and couples happier.  Back then women still remained in the tradcon position because a pregnancy needed the husband around as the wife wasn't skilled enough to work for equal pay and deal with kids.

  • Michael 2015-08-21 11:57:39

    Overall love and agree with the article; but one note on your argument  "Most people wouldn’t have increased masturbation if they were getting laid all the time." You are saying that married people masturbate more because they don't get laid. Now I don't pretend to speak for all married people, but for some of us masturbation is PART of getting laid. . .Not all the time, but to "spice things up". For marriages such as mine that have sex often (we are committed to some sort of sexual interaction every day), you want to add variety. I would say that masturbation plays into our sex at least 4-5 times a month. Just a thought.

  • Blackdragon 2015-08-21 19:44:49

    I would say that masturbation plays into our sex at least 4-5 times a month. Just a thought.
    Masturbation during sex with a woman doesn't apply to what I was saying.

  • Felix 2016-02-02 04:17:50

    People are having sex less because of cultural shifts. IE. men turning into betas and women able to say no. They get bored, no sex. You act beta, no sex. Alpha turns into beta, no sex. It's even worse in Japan. The Betalization. You could say the Japanese have turned into gammas. So even less sex. The big boob imagery is an effect not a cause. The cause itself is cultural. More feminism, more choice, Disney programming, and irrational programming. Crazy expectation from females, etc. Another poster is right. The massive increase in obesity also lowers sex drive. You can't have sex if your hormones and body isn't working. Even if you want sex, you won't be having any. The depressive state sucks sex drive right out of you. There's lots of reasons but guys are depressed because they seriously don't know what to do about girls and can't get one. They act so submissive, the girls aren't interested. All these are causing the low amount of sex. It's not the imagery. The imagery is an effect of social liberalization. It just makes the beta males more depressed because it seems like everyone else is having sex and you're the only one that isn't getting any. You are not going to go out and try to pick up women if you think you are a loser and can't get sex. A vicious cycle downwards.

  • nunurbusiness 2016-09-16 22:42:35

    Comment deleted for violation of rules 1 and 2.

  • Mira 2017-11-29 16:27:25

    Putting feminism and Japan in the same sentence is laughable. It's probably the least feminist mainstream asian country there is. South Korea on the other hand is getting feminist pretty quickly. That said, the Japanese are pretty betafied, yes, because culture does demand that. Gender roles are strict af, and the men are expected to be providers. Women are not supposed to enjoy sex beyond procreation at this point, so once they have children, the men are basically completely cut off. Not to mention, women are supposed to rule the household and money assets, while the men simply work and have a meal ready at home. The Japanese are also unwilling to change this by letting wives have jobs to help provide for the family. The moment a woman gets married, she is essentially kicked out of the workforce, because they don't want to deal with maternity leave. They only want workers they can drain completely. Awful work culture is the culprit here. They are expected to go out drinking every night with co-workers, get home late, and have no time to pay attention to the wife. Western wives would lose their shit if their husband went out drinking every night and hardly interacted with his children. The work culture in japan has destroyed their sex life. It has little to do with actual sex drive decreasing.

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