66% of Americans Have Never Slept with an Ex

C. Price

Written by: C. Price

C. Price

C. Price is part of DatingAdvice.com's content team. She writes advice articles, how-to guides, and studies — all relating to dating, relationships, love, sex, and more.

Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro brings more than 30 years of journalism experience to ensure DatingAdvice articles have been edited for overall clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement. She has worked at The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, The Gwinnett Daily News, and The Gainesville Sun covering lifestyle topics.

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This is an exclusive study conducted by DatingAdvice.com, which surveyed respondents over the course of three weeks to reflect an accurate representation of the U.S. population.

Sleeping with an ex can be dangerous territory. Some see it as a foolish temptation, while others see it as one last shot at making things work.

However it happens, we wanted to know how often it happens and who is more likely to do it.

DatingAdvice.com’s latest study asked a cross-section of Americans a very simple question: Have you ever slept with an ex?

Sixty-six percent of Americans said they haven’t.

Women outpaced men, as seven out of 10 said they have not had sex with a former lover compared to six in 10 men.

At 84 and 82 percent, older Americans and Asian-Americans were among the most likely groups to not return to a past romantic partner, respectively. In terms of their counterparts, only 57 percent of those aged 25 to 34 and just 60 percent of Hispanics have not slept with an ex.

“Seven out of 10 women have not

had sex with a former lover.”

Following closely behind was high-income earners and those living in the Midwest.

Men and women earning $125,000 or more annually were 22 percent more likely to avoid sexual encounters with an ex than those earning between $75,000 and $99,999 a year, while Midwesterners were 23 percent more likely to avoid sexual encounters with an ex than Southerners.

Gay respondents and divorcees were among the least likely demographics to stay away from an ex.

Slightly more than half of homosexual men and lesbian women answered in the affirmative, while 56 percent of divorced individuals did.

There were a lot of surprises in the results, which is perhaps the nature of the subject matter. After all, jumping back into bed with an ex can be a huge surprise in itself and certainly for the people involved.

The study surveyed 1,080 respondents over the course of three weeks, balancing responses by age, gender, income, race, sexuality and other factors in order to accurately represent the U.S. population. The study has a margin of error of +/- 2.8%.

The Breakdown: Americans Who Haven’t Slept with an Ex

By gender:

  • Male: 61%
  • Female: 70%

By sexuality:

  • Straight: 66%
  • Gay: 51%

By marital status:

  • Single, Never Married: 60%
  • Married: 71%
  • Divorced: 56%

By age:

  • 18 to 24: 66%
  • 25 to 34: 57%
  • 35 to 44: 59%
  • 45 to 54: 59%
  • 54 to 64: 73%
  • 65 and older: 84%

By race:

  • White: 69%
  • African-American: 48%
  • Hispanic: 60%
  • Asian: 82%

By income:

  • Under $25,000: 68%
  • $25,000 to $49,999: 65%
  • $50,000 to $74,999: 57%
  • $75,000 to $99,999: 63%
  • $100,000 to $124,999: 66%
  • $125,000 or higher: 77%

By region:

  • Northeast: 68%
  • Midwest: 75%
  • South: 61%
  • West: 63%

Visit DatingAdvice.com/Studies for more research on dating and relationship topics. 

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