Early initiation into sex drives risky behaviours - myth undone

May 18th, 2011 - 8:15 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, May 18 (IANS) Early initiation into sex seems to drive risky behaviour like promiscuity later in life — but does delaying such acts help? A new research claims to break the assumption that delaying sexual activity to a later age makes one any less promiscuous.

Psychologists, in a multi-varsity study, found that though there was a correlation between early sexual initiation — which the study defined as 16 or younger — and later sexual risk-taking, there was no difference in their promiscuity, the journal Psychological Science reports.

University of South Florida psychologist Marina A. Bornovalova and her colleagues –Brooke M. Huibregtse, Matt McGue and William Iacono of University of Minnesota and Brian Hicks of the University of Michigan — tested more than 1,000 pairs of identical and fraternal twins enrolled in the longitudinal Minnesota Twin Family Study (MTFS).

These twins, aged 11 upon the time of enrolment, were questioned on biological, social and psychological factors. Then, at age 24, they were asked about the risks they were taking in their sex lives. In some pairs, one twin had early sex and the other didn’t - and the two twins were compared on their sexual risk-taking in adulthood.

Numerous runs of the data led to the same conclusion and the researchers concluded that people who indulge in sexual activity while they are old are as much prone to having multiple partners as are the ones who do so at a young age, according to a Florida statement.

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