Indian Marriage Family Jindal

New study: women who have fewer premarital sex partners have lower risk of divorce

Consider this article from Family Studies that talks about how the number of pre-marital sex partners that a woman has increases her risk of divorce.

It says:

American sexual behavior is much different than it used to be. Today, most Americans think premarital sex is okay, and will have three or more sexual partners before marrying. What, if anything, does premarital sex have to do with marital stability?

This research brief shows that the relationship between divorce and the number of sexual partners women have prior to marriage is complex. I explore this relationship using data from the three most recent waves of the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG) collected in 2002, 2006-2010, and 2011-2013. For women marrying since the start of the new millennium:

  • Women with 10 or more partners were the most likely to divorce, but this only became true in recent years;
  • Women with 3-9 partners were less likely to divorce than women with 2 partners; and,
  • Women with 0-1 partners were the least likely to divorce.

Earlier research found that having multiple sex partners prior to marriage could lead to less happy marriages, and often increased the odds of divorce.

[…]Even more noteworthy has been the decline in the proportion of women who get married having had only one sex partner (in most cases, their future husbands). Forty-three percent of women had just one premarital sex partner in the 1970s.

[…]By the 2010s, only 5 percent of new brides were virgins. At the other end of the distribution, the number of future wives who had ten or more sex partners increased from 2 percent in the 1970s to 14 percent in the 2000s, and then to 18 percent in the 2010s. Overall, American women are far more likely to have had multiple premarital sex partners in recent years (unfortunately, the NSFG doesn’t have full data on men’s premarital sexual behavior, and in any event they recall their own marital histories less reliably than do women).

Here’s the change:

Women have freely chosen to dismiss the Bible and the moral law
Women have freely chosen to dismiss the Bible and the moral law

And the problem with this, of course, is that more premarital sex partners means a higher risk of divorce:

Even one non-husband premarital sex partner raises risk of divorce
Even one non-husband premarital sex partner raises risk of divorce

Why is the 2-partner number so high?

In most cases, a woman’s two premarital sex partners include her future husband and one other man. That second sex partner is first-hand proof of a sexual alternative to one’s husband. These sexual experiences convince women that sex outside of wedlock is indeed a possibility. The man involved was likely to have become a partner in the course of a serious relationship—women inclined to hook up will have had more than two premarital partners—thereby emphasizing the seriousness of the alternative.

The Christian Post had an article about some recent numbers from the Centers for Disease Control about virgins.


A new Centers for Disease Control study examines teenage health behaviors in connection to their self-reported sexual activity and shows those who remain abstinent are much healthier on many fronts than their sexually active peers.

The report, titled “Sexual Identity, Sexual Contacts, and Health-Related Behaviors Among Students in Grades 9-12, United States and Selected Sites,” showcased the results from a 2015 survey that monitored several categories of health-related behaviors like tobacco usage, drug and alcohol use, sexual habits, unhealthy dietary behaviors, and behaviors that contribute to unintentional injuries and violence.

The report concludes “that students who had no sexual contact have a much lower prevalance of most health-risk behaviors compared with students” who had sexual contact.

The article quotes Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, who I have featured on this blog many times:

In a Monday interview with The Christian Post, Jennifer Roback Morse, founder and president of the Ruth Institute, said, “this study is remarkable because it asks questions and reports the answers, rather than avoiding questions or assuming answers.”

As Glenn Stanton noted last week in The Federalist, the results from those questions and answers are remarkable.

With regard to smoking, teenage virgins are 3,300 percent less likely to smoke daily than their peers who are sexually involved with someone of the opposite sex, Stanton computed from the report’s data. Teen virgins are 9,500 percent less likely to smoke daily than their peers who are sexually involved with someone of the same sex or in a bisexual relationship, he added. Chaste young people are also extremely less likely to use indoor tanning beds, binge drink, smoke marijuana, ride in cars as passengers with a drunk driver, and get into physical fights than their sexually active peers. Abstinent youth are also more likely to get a solid eight hours of sleep every night and eat breakfast daily.

[…]The CDC report also included findings from 25 state surveys, and 19 large, urban school district surveys conducted among students in grades 9–12 which took place between December of 2014 and September of 2015.

Now, many pro traditional marriage people will tell young men “feminism and the sexual revolution change nothing about a woman’s suitability for marriage, so go out there and get married to these women anyway”. In my experience, no one is telling women NOT to follow their hearts, and explaining to them the harm that they do by allowing their feelings to determine who they will engage in relationships.

I would like to see women make better decisions with men before they marry, rather than be influenced by their peers and culture to give themselves to men who are not marriage-minded. Maybe a little skepticism should be shown to “follow your heart”? Women need to understand what they are losing when they choose to have premarital sex.

In my group of friends, the men are aware of the Biblical prohibition on premarital sex. My friends know about the research on marriage, and what it takes to make a marriage work. We don’t follow our hearts, because we do what we know will work to achieve the results we want. We don’t listen to the culture, and we don’t listen to radical feminists. Men generally take an engineering approach to marriage – we want to know what the best practices and tradeoffs are, and then we plan and act to succeed.

5 thoughts on “New study: women who have fewer premarital sex partners have lower risk of divorce”

  1. 18+% of women have had TEN OR MORE SEXUAL PARNTERS?? Holy hell! That’s insanely disgusting! I mean, think about it! If you had 100 cookies and someone told you 18 of them were poisoned would you risk eating one? TEN OR MORE??? It makes me sick just thinking that any man would even marry such a woman, though I suppose she’d be pretty quiet on her past exploits. It is 2021, though, so she might not.


      1. Honestly i have no idea why they needed a “study” on this one. Must have been a lot of dirty laundry and the end of it!
        If a woman is a big slut before marriage, it’s likely she may continue to be during the marriage.
        Also there’s a crude formula: a woman tells only half (or is it a quarter?) the number of actual sex partners. A man says his number is double the true figure.
        Me, im a different person. Upfront, honest, a realist. Ive had 27 sex partners that i can remember from 2000-2012, half of those in 10-12. I met number 28, my wife, in 2012, and have been faithful ever since and continue to do so. Her number on the other hand was 3 or 4. I dont question her too much on it, i trust her to be honest with me, and she trusts me to be without judgement.
        But if she had said 10, id straight away know (assume) that if i wasnt in bed with her then another man was. But her number wouldnt gave mattered, we spent all our waking hours together so we had no time for others.
        You see, i know women. What theyll say, their reactions, different behaviours, how to get them warmed up and also fired up. My experience with many women help me better understand them, and i called upon that knowledge for a better understanding of my wife. Trust me, once u know, it works. And i was able to figure out which girls were booty calls and which were women looking for a man.

        Truth is most say they want a man, but really after boys. Show you are a man then youll meet a woman.


        1. I don’t think anyone believes that premarital sex affects the stability of their future marriage. No one. That’s why studies are important, to take this out of the realm of faith and into the realm of data.


  2. This was a great article. I agree single people should be preparing for marriage by being refined and changing BEFORE because thinking you’ll automatically be a different person after the wedding day is delusional. Thinking you can change someone after marriage is also delusional.
    With that said, people get married at all different ages and for all different reasons and some fail and some succeed.

    God’s way is always the best option.

    Liked by 1 person

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