Sexual Promiscuity: A Link to Divorce and Unhappiness

At this current juncture in America, many believe that casual sex is harmless to individuals and society. They believe that they are free to do what they want, whomever they want, and be sexually free as long as it’s voluntary. This idea was very foreign to older generations, and it started becoming a norm in society. According to survey data from 1970-2010, 29% of Americans were accepting of premarital sex in the 1970s while that rate later increased to 55% in 2010. When split into generations, 62% of Millenials had the highest approval rating for premarital sex. This shift in attitude surrounding sex culminated in the rise of casual sex as 35% of Gen X’ers engaged in casual sex in the 1980s while that rate increased to 45% in 2010 for Millenials. [1] This influence came from the ideas of the Sexual Revolution in the 1960s, which activists fought for the social and sexual freedoms of women. Promiscuity was one of the libertine values supported by feminists and social liberals, as its values centered on having casual sex and multiple sexual partners in a lifetime as a form of personal liberty or expression of sexual freedom. Social conservatives fight against this idea because it destroys the foundations of traditional families (bedrock social unit of civilization). Leftists, on the other hand, embrace this unrestrained sexual behavior, and silence anyone by gossiping, virtue signaling, and slandering. They are promoting and normalizing a destructive behavior in an effort to bring down Western culture and civilization. [2]

Although the signs of sexual promiscuity may not only come from unconstrained sexual drive (symptoms of other psychological disorders), the cultural shift in attitude around sex and marriage has normalized a high risk behavior that leads to damaging effects on the individual and society itself. Over the years, people conducted years of research and studies to explain the actual effects of sexual promiscuity on an individual and societal level, and how promiscuity corresponds to a dysgenic civilization. Sexual promiscuity lead to nuclear family breakdowns by increasing single parenthood, which lead to improper parenting of the next generation who are charged with preserving their societies. The way to reverse this trend is to understand the destructive effects of sexual flings and casual hookups, and to reinstate the idea of having standards in picking a person who will actually benefit one’s life in the long-term. This will save people from a destructive life, and to preserve the very society that was passed down to them by those before them.

Sexual Diseases and Psychological Damages

On an individual level, being sexually promiscuous increases the risk of physical and mental damage. The rate of contracting AIDS, STDs, and HIV increases as you increase the number of sexual partners. The Center for Disease Control projected 19 million people will be infected each year, [3] and a separate survey report found 24% of all teens who contracted an STD continuously have unprotected sex. [4] Being sexually promiscuous is considered a high risk behavior that coincides with other destructive behaviors or habits like substance abuse, lack of sleep, smoking, etc. It is one of traits of impulsivity, which has catastrophic effects on both men and women (most affected sex). Both men and women can exhibit disorders like Bipolar Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder, with sexual promiscuity being a determining indicator of such disorders. Promiscuity, in some cases, can be seen as a symptom of larger problems such as improper child rearing, physical or genetic makeup, mental disorders, cultural factors and social problems, or can be even the cause of these problems. Regardless of whether it is a symptom and/or a cause of other problems, the central theme of this concept explains that having casual sex will eventually lead to more dangerous decisions and consequences in the form of different abuses, both physical and mental. It can even lead up to abnormal sexual behaviors, which occurs after a person keeps having casual sex (hookups, friends with benefits). These people are getting short-term satisfaction and over time that satisfaction will dissipate. It can lead to sense of emptiness, which eventually leads people to look towards different and often extreme methods of satisfying their addiction. In the end, the most problematic issue surrounding sexual promiscuity is the degradation of marital stability. [3]

Marriage and Happiness

Sexual promiscuity takes a toll upon women’s marital stability and their long-term happiness. Several sources indicate that many young women who have sex early on in their lives (age 12 and 13) tend to have higher rates of divorce than any other age other group. Per Kirk Johnson’s research from the Heritage Foundation, teenage girls tend to also have the most sexual partners in their lifetime and have the highest turnover rate in sexual partners. As we go up the age bracket, the older a woman is when she first has sex, the less lifetime sexual partners she will have on average. In terms of turnover rate, girls who start in their teen years (12yrs and younger) will have at least 1.77 or 2 (rounded) sexual partners on average per year compared to older women who later become sexually active (women at 26yrs+ is 0.33 on average). Younger girls who are sexually active in their teen years may have more sexual partners due to experiencing longer years of sexual activity. As noted in the data, the younger girls start having sex, the more sexual partners they will have while others who are older will have less.

In terms of marital stability, 50.90% of girls at the age of 13-14 who were sexually active became single mothers while that rate decreases with older age groups. Women at the age of 19-20 who became single mothers were 20.50% while 14.87% of women who were sexually active at the age of 26+ became single mothers. That is a staggering comparison between the younger age groups and older age groups. This means that women who became sexually active at the age of 13-14 were 3 times more likely to become single parents compared to women in their 20s. Women who are in stable marriages (married for at least 5yrs) tend to have the greatest stability when they start their sexual activity when they are older, with 68.58% of 26yrs+ having stable marriages. Those who start having sex when they are 12 and younger only had 18.47% of stable marriages in that group.

As young teens become sexually active and have more sexual encounters with many more people, it also increases out-of-wedlock child birth rates and pregnancy. 39.65% of women who started their sexual activity at ages 13-14 had children out-of-wedlock while women at the age of 23-25 have a reduced rate of 8.35%. For pregnancy out-of-wedlock, women at ages 13-14 have a 64.67% likelihood of getting pregnant compared to women at the age of 26+ having a 15.80% chance of getting pregnant out-of-wedlock.

As we keep going through the data, findings reveal that having intercourse with multiple sexual partners only increases the risks of experiencing negative consequences. Women who have more sexual partners (at least 5 partners) are 4 times more likely to abort their child than women who only slept with the person they marry. Likewise, women who slept with at least 5 sexual partners increased their chances of being a single mother by 7 times compared to women who only slept with the person they are marrying. The comparison shows an absolute detriment to females when they increase the number of sexual partners in their lifetime. For personal happiness, 37% of women who had 5 sexual partners or more reported that they were very happy while 56% of women who married the person they only had sex with reported being currently very happy. [5] A separate study conducted by the National Marriage Project also reported similar findings where 53% of women who only slept with their future spouse ended up being very happy with their marriage while women who had multiple sexual partners prior to marrying their husband reported a lower rate. This rate is reduced to 42% for women who slept with more than 2 partners  while 22% of women who slept with 10 or more people prior to getting married reported being happy in their marriages. [6]

Despite the limited amount of studies linking promiscuity to divorce rates, most of these studies reflected similar conclusions regarding how the quantity of sexual partners increases the likelihood of divorce. In a study conducted by Anthony Paik found that women who slept with a man who will soon become their future husband did not have a high risk of divorce in contrast to women who had multiple partners (study only examined ages 16yr+). For cohabitors, divorce rates increase when a partner had a series of past sexual partners. [7] According to the Heritage Foundation, cohabitors divorce about double the rate of those who do not live together before marriage. That rate later quadruples for cohabitors who marry a partner outside of their present relationship. [8] The researcher concluded that it is possible that a person’s attitude towards sex, sexual relationships and marriage changes with sexual experience which is later reflected in later choices.

Destruction of the Family

As the data indicate that women have a higher chance of being single mothers, it also impacts the economic and sociological well-being of the family. Single parent households are generally poorer than married couple families, being less capable of providing adequate parental care for their children. Almost half of American families go into poverty after a divorce (75% of women apply for welfare due to divorce or a breakup with their male cohabitor). It’s not difficult to see this since a family’s income is derived from the family structure, with men being the breadwinners of the family while mothers took care of the children. When a marriage dissolves, family income decreases by 42% on average. [8] In 2013, the yearly median family income for single mothers was only 1/3 of married families’ median annual income ($84,000). For the poverty rate, 39.6% of single mother families lived in poverty while 51.9% lived in extreme poverty as defined by the federal poverty line (living under $9,900 with a family of three). For married families, only 7.6% lived in poverty as of 2013. The fact that single mothers have to work harder to provide a home, food, clothes, parental care, and all the duties that come with being a parent after a divorce increases financial responsibility. This constrains the amount of opportunities and hours that the mother must allocate in order to balance all the responsibilities of raising a family. Single mothers spent half of their income on housing and 1/3 of the other on childcare in 2013, often showing that they have very little for other expenses. [9] This rate may decrease for women who have been working and have a relatively high income prior to a divorce or a breakup with a cohabitor. Divorce is a strong predictor of poverty for families, and it affects low-income families the most. [8]

These problems aren’t only economic, but also physical and psychological. Single mothers must work long hours while also functioning as a parent, which takes a toll on their health. This ranges from increased chances of developing mental illnesses, addictions, and even suicide. Children who are living under a single mother household after divorce tend to exhibit behaviors as described in the effects on marital stability section. Teenage girls are 2.5 times more likely to give birth out-of-wedlock (chances increase even higher when parents divorce during a daughter’s mid-teenage years), more likely to engage in sexual relationships at a rapid rate, and are more likely to experience unstable marriages. Divorce decreases the chances of educational successes (very likely to drop out of high school and earn lower grades) and makes them 1.4 times more likely to be unemployed, while also diminishing their mental and physical health. As their mental and physical health deteriorates, these teens are 25%-50% more likely to display signs of antisocial behavior, depression, anxiety, dependence, hyper activity, and suicidal thoughts. [8]

This can be explained by the lack of a parental care and supervision at home, trauma from divorce disputes, child abuse, lack of father or mother figure, and other factors. Child abuse is especially a serious problem for the family when we see the link between divorce and children’s upbringing. The rate of maltreatment by family structure (when counting children per 1,000) shows the lowest chance of child abuse in married families compared to unmarried, single parent, and single parent with a partner. Single mothers who are living with a partner are 8.25 times more likely to have their children abused moderately (8 times as much for serious abuse) in the household in contrast to married and intact families. [10] The very fact that children are affected negatively by divorce will not only lead them to have these problems, but they will also engage in other high-risk and violent behaviors. Children who came from broken homes were more likely to become juveniles and criminals when they grow older. This is because they lack any figure to supervise them and raise them to be proper citizens of the community. [11]

Concluding Remarks

After going through several statistical studies on the empirical link of promiscuity and divorce, and how divorce is linked to poverty and crime, it is difficult to understand how anyone would tolerate or even advocate this type of behavior. Although the data does not indicate that a person who engage in casual sex will be forever doomed to have an unhappy marriage or a life of poverty, but it means that they have a strong likelihood of experiencing such effects. One example in America that illustrates this problem is Black communities. After the 1960s, we can see that blacks experienced more broken homes, committed the most violent crimes on average, and have one of the highest poverty rates in America. This is due to the welfare state expanding along with the sexual revolution pushing people towards accepting and/or tolerating highly sexualized behaviors. Sexual promiscuity has done very little in benefiting the individual, especially women, let alone the entire society. Societies are built up of families, and they are the basic building blocks of society. The fact that liberals and progressives would normalize this type of high risk behavior in the name of social liberty without accounting for the full cost upon disrupting the reproductive division of labor is appalling to say the least. It leads to a dysgenic population growth that will most likely lead families into ruin. At the very end, their voluntary choice and erosion of conservative culture produced negative externalities upon the cultural and physical commons of society.


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Image Credit: ibreakstock

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