New study: Children exposed to sex in films have sex earlier and have more partners

Dina sent me this story from the UK Daily Mail.


Children who watch films with a high sexual content tend to lose their virginity earlier and have more partners, a study has found.

Not only are they more promiscuous, they are also more likely to engage in risky sex by not using condoms.

The six-year study of more than 1,200 teens refers to sexual content in films.

[…]The study on the effect on younger teenagers of sex in films was published in Psychological Science, the peer-reviewed journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

Researchers from Dartmouth College, an Ivy League university in the US, surveyed 684 top-grossing movies from 1998 to 2004, and then coded them for sexual content.

A film such as Eyes Wide Shut would be coded highly, while Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King would get a low coding. Although some of the films had 18-ratings, they could have been seen by younger children on DVDs at home.

The researchers then recruited 1,228 youngsters aged between 12 and 14, and each was asked which films on the list they had seen from a number of different collections of 50 that were randomly selected.

Six years later the same participants were surveyed to find out how old they were when they became sexually active and how risky their sexual behaviour might have been.

The results indicated that exposure to sexual content in movies at an early age is likely to influence adolescents’ sexual behaviour.

Previously, I have argued that early premarital sex and a high number of premarital sex partners are independent risk factors for marital instability. Parents should therefore be careful about what their children are exposed to in films, if they want their children to have a happy marriage.

2 thoughts on “New study: Children exposed to sex in films have sex earlier and have more partners”

  1. Growing up as a kid, I’ve always thought it was crazy to think about how so many kids would be allowed by the parents to watch very depraved sexual materials on TV and the movies, and think nothing of it.


    1. I grew up poor so we only had antenna channels and I almost never went to the cinema. Now I’m well off and I still go to the cinema only once every 2-3 years. I don’t have a TV either.


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