Teens’ Sex Lives Suck, Too

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.


In May, AARP made headlines when its latest sex survey showed that the economy had taken a serious toll on the sex lives of the 45 and over set. Baby boomers are having way less sex now than they were in 2004, and even when they are, they’re enjoying it less, AARP declared. But now it looks like it’s not just baby boomers who aren’t getting any. The Centers for Disease Control Monday released the 2009 data from its Youth Risk Surveillance System, which showed that teenagers were just a tiny bit less sexually active in 2009 than they were in 2007 (a data point evangelical Christian groups are, naturally, promoting as a sign that abstinence education is working).

More interesting, there was a bigger dip in the number of 9th through 12th graders who were getting wasted first and then having sex, a sign, perhaps, that today’s recession-worn teenagers can’t afford the sexual lubricants of booze or drugs. Either that or they’re choosing to spend that money on birth control instead. The use of the Pill or Depo Provera shots went up sharply between 2007 and 2009. Sadly, that still means only 22 percent of teen girls are taking serious measures to prevent pregnancy. Still, the numbers suggest that, as with the baby boomers, the recession may have left teenagers feeling a lot less randy–one side-effect of the economic downturn their parents are no doubt cheering.

TIME IS RUNNING OUT!

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and it's truly crunch time: About 15 percent of our yearly online giving usually comes in during the final week of the year, and in "No Cute Headlines or Manipulative BS," we explain why we simply can't afford to come up short right now.

The bottom line: Corporations and powerful people with deep pockets will never sustain the type of journalism Mother Jones exists to do. And advertising or profit-driven ownership groups will never make time-intensive, in-depth reporting viable.

That's why donations big and small make up 74 percent of our budget this year. There is no backup to keep us going, no alternate revenue source, no secret benefactor. If readers don’t donate, we won’t be here. It's that simple.

And if you can help us out with a donation right now, all online gifts will be matched thanks to an incredibly generous matching gift pledge.

payment methods

TIME IS RUNNING OUT!

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and it's truly crunch time: About 15 percent of our yearly online giving usually comes in during the final week of the year, and in "No Cute Headlines or Manipulative BS," we explain why we simply can't afford to come up short right now.

The bottom line: Corporations and powerful people with deep pockets will never sustain the type of journalism Mother Jones exists to do. And advertising or profit-driven ownership groups will never make time-intensive, in-depth reporting viable.

That's why donations big and small make up 74 percent of our budget this year. There is no backup to keep us going, no alternate revenue source, no secret benefactor. If readers don’t donate, we won’t be here. It's that simple.

And if you can help us out with a donation right now, all online gifts will be matched thanks to an incredibly generous matching gift pledge.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate