Study Finds Sex Among Adolescents Not as Common as Publicly Perceived

C. Price

Written by: C. Price

C. Price

C. Price is part of'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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Advertiser Disclosure

Sex among girls and boys ages 13 or younger may not be as common as public perception would have you believe.

A study conducted by the Guttmacher Institute in New York found less than 1 percent of women said they were 11 years old the first time they had sex.

Another 1 percent said they were 12 years old when they first had sex and 2 percent said they were 13.

Unfortunately, the majority of sex among the young adolescent girls was nonconsensual.

Researchers said 62 percent of the women who had sex by age 10 and 50 percent who had sex by age 11 said the sex was coerced.


“The average adolescent chooses to

have sex for the first time at 17.”

Conversely, 2 percent of men said they were 12 years old the first time they had sex and 5 percent said they were 13. The study did not include information regarding whether the sex was coerced or not.

Researchers found the average adolescent chooses to have sex for the first time at 17, which has been the nation’s average for the last 50 years.

In fact, the study found modern teens are more likely to delay losing their virginity compared to teens from previous generations.

Modern teens are also more likely to have safe sex. Eighty-two percent of 16-year-olds and 85 percent of 17- to 18-year-olds began using some form of contraception within the first month of having sex.

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