A new survey has lifted the lid on changing sexual habits in China with more people than ever saying they had indulged in pre-marital sex.
The report – collated and published this week in the monthly magazine Insight China – claimed 71.4 percent of respondents said they had sex before marriage, compared to the 40 percent who responded the same way in 1994, and the 15 percent who did the same back in 1989.
“The change that has occurred in China usually takes 100 to 200 years in many countries," sexologist Li Yinhe told the magazine. “Mainlanders are increasingly seeing sex as being for pleasure rather than reproduction.”
That may well be the case but while those polled were fine with admitting they had indulged, at the same time they seemed a little more coy when it came to admitting they thought it was ok for them to do that very indulging.
When asked what their attitude was to pre-marital sex only 46.3 percent of males polled said they agreed with it while only 38.8 percent of women gave the act the nod.
A lack of any sort of formal sex education both at home and in the classroom has long been bemoaned in the mainland Chinese media, and the survey confirmed that when it came to learning about the birds and the bees, most Chinese were left to their own devices.
When asked how they discovered the secrets of sex, 29.3 percent of males said they had turned to the internet while the most popular response for females with 26.1 percent was attributed to “practical experience.”
The survey polled 1,013 people, 56 percent male and 44 percent female, and was carried out in a joint effort between Insight China and the Tsinghua School of Journalism and Communication in Beijing. More than two thirds of respondents were aged between 20 and 39, according to the magazine.
How China learns about sex (males): Internet 29.3 percent; practical experience 22.8 percent; books 15.6 percent; pornography 11.8 percent; conversations with friends 10.2 percent; school 7.5 percent; movies and TV series 2.1 percent; parents 0.6 percent.
How China learns about sex (females): Internet 18 percent; practical experience 26.1 percent; books 20.6 percent; pornography 6.9 percent; conversations with friends 10.4 percent; school 10.7 percent; movies and TV series 4.6 percent; parents 2.8 percent.
China’s attitude to pre-marital sex (male): Agree 46.3 percent; disagree 17.8 percent; indifferent 25.9 percent; other 10 percent.
China’s attitude to pre-marital sex (female): Agree 38.8 percent; disagree 33.5 percent; indifferent 15.7 percent; other 12 percent.