Millennials Are Having Sex Less Frequently

Millennials are thought to be the most sexually promiscuous generation of all time. Hookup culture and having multiple sexual partners is no longer as taboo and has become accepted. This causes a perception that there is an increase in sexual intercourse among young adults. Is this perception grounded in facts?Does the data tell another story?  A new study conducted by San Diego State University psychology professor Jean M. Twenge discovered that Millennials in their 20s are having sex less frequently when compared to the previous generation. The study uses data from the General Social Survey which aims to monitor changes in social views in American society. The GSS has a nationally representative sample of the sexual behavior of over 26,000 American adults since 1989. 

Generation X Compared to Millennials


The graph represents the aggregated responses of 18-24 year old adults of Generation X and Millennials from 1989 to 2014 when asked about the frequency they had sex in the past year. Here are the key takeaways:

  • 15 percent of Millennials reported to not have sex at all compared to only 11.2 percent of Generation X
  • Generation X had more frequent sex (higher percentage of responses for having sex 4+ a week, 2-3 a week, and weekly) than Millennials
  • Millennials had less frequent sex (higher percentage of responses for having sex 2-3 times a month, once a month, or once or twice a month)


Twenge believes that Millennials have less frequent sex because of the decline in steady sexual partners and married couples. Millennials are shown to have more sexual partners than Generation X. Both generations have a majority saying they have one sexual partner but Generation X responded to this answer more frequently. The perception of the current hookup culture is shattered with the fact that more Millennials are not having sex at all and having less frequent sex with multiple partners.


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