Gay Men Reporting Fewer Partners

May 8, 2013

A new study suggests that gay men have fewer sex partners. "The mean number of male sexual partners MSM reported in the previous year fell significantly from 2.9 to 2.3 between the two surveys (p = 0.035) and was more marked in men under 24 years old (mean 2.9 to 2.1 partners, p = 0.027). The number of partners also fell in men aged 35 to 44 from 3.0 to 2.2, though this was not quite statistically significant (p = 0.07)." Through the different demos there was a consistent (if not hugely significant) drop in the number of sexual partners, which leads me to wonder if marriage equality is starting to have an effect on our community as a whole. Could it be that with the new possibility of legally settling down with someone a shift is beginning in how we date and hook up? It's probably too early to say, but based on this study it's definitely a possibility.

Unfortunately while the number of sexual partners has dropped, the rates of HIV and STDs have risen. But still some hopeful news is that the number of gay men who had never been tested for HIV fell from 25% to 15%.

With new legal possibilities and views about how we love and live, will there be a shift in the way we think about sexual partners?

Tags: HIV, Sexual Partners, Marriage
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Post written by RobHeartsDH (View Author Profile)
About this author: Rob lives in Manhattan with his black pug Riley. When he’s not thinking about daddies, he enjoys writing, eating burritos, watching copious amounts of television, and thinking about his next meal.
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Maybe cos the closets are closing? Who knows why however I am amazed at the amount of bi sexual men about having sex and wanting discretion.

Also i am noticing more younger guys about, maybe its guys not being truthful again this can be a cause for rise in HIV There are so many questions

That's very interesting; I'm part of that statistic, if not the actually part of the survey.

For me, it's simply that the overt emphasis on all sex all the time has gotten rather boring. Maybe it's age, maybe it's saturation. I don't know.

Maybe the survey is flawed?

How can marriage slow down the number of partners when there are so many open relationships?

Does that mean 2-3 relationships (e.g., boyfriends) per year or 2-3 sexual encounters per year?

Imagine a new attitude among gay men -- that sexual promiscuity is for losers.

Awareness of the four incurable "H" viruses could be a factor.

60% of gay porn starts are now reportedly POZ. That could even make some people porn-averse.

Awareness of the new incurable gonorrhea could be a factor.

Consider the countless lives, marriages, relationships, good health statuses, resources, etc. sacrificed on the altar of sexual promiscuity.

Peace and grace.

The falling rate is certainly not MY fault.

Could one of the reasons be that hooking up online is very time consuming, only results in good matches part of the time, and yields a fair percentage of flaky no-shows. The payoff is such that it's easy for one to say,"Oh well. My old FB Harry is better than most of what shows up at the door." Maybe it works better in rural areas or small towns, but it's such a crap shoot in a big city. Online hook ups sound easy but are a lot of work.

i think that people may just be "happier" being themselves the stigma about being gay has largely dropped.

Most of the guys on the gay dating apps, especially Scruff, report they are already partnered. This fact does not slow them down from hooking up.

Hey DH, this is a bit off topic but I could really use some help from you guys.

Im a 20 year old, biracial athlete who grew up in a strict christian family (go figure, right?). I started to come to terms with who I am when I was in high school. I met someone who would change my life forever...oddly enough, it was my basketball coach. He is about 40 years old at the moment and I fell for him...hard. It got to the point where I would do crazy, idiotic things like sneak ounces of weed into school to get caught and have him pay attention to me. Things that could get me arrested. And it worked, to an extent. He grew to be a skewed-version of the father I never really had. But I loved him like crazy and even though Im in my third year of college right now, I just cant seem to get him off my damn mind. It messes with my relationships (or lack thereof) and even hinders me on the basketball court sometimes. I want to tell him how I feel. Not to elope with me and magically become gay (he has a wife and two baby daughters) but just to sit down with him and let him know whats been goin on. And it wouldnt be out of the blue, i had written him a letter (at the suggestion of the head of my high school) and vaguely pointed out that I "kinda sorta liked him". Im sorry for the long post, but I could really use some advice from you all. I dont get to talk to other gay men very often. I want to start the healing and I want to have a normal relationship with a guy I really love, because I know I got tons of love to give.
Feel free to always shoot me a message if you have any ideas for me =). You don't know how much I would appreciate it

Thanks, and God bless.

I don't know if this is for real...but I know of things a lot stranger.

Listen, you need some on the ground person there you could connect with who you can talk to face to face about this. If you're in college, see if they have a counseling center. Ok, you may have heard this before, but it is good advice. If no counseling center try some gay friendly church who can put you in touch with local resources.

It sounds like this is driving you crazy, but you are also aware that any relations (or at least gay relationship) is unrealistic.

But don't give up. Man, I was married and left my wife for a man who I loved but he didn't know how I felt. Luckily I didn't tell him but got counseling instead as he turned out to be a real homophobe.

Casual hook ups can be dicey at times; but usually satisfying for what they are. I recently had an unusual one that's worth mentioning. I'm 70 and age s' ure as hell hasn't affected my sexual life to any noticeable degree. Sure, gravity takes its revenge and my ass doesn't fill out my jeans like it used to and so on. It is what it is and no big deal. Few young guys - and fewer men my age - hold much interest for me. Now, the 40 to 60ish group is another story.
I live a couple of blocks from the beach in Vancouver and like to spend time just casually enjoying the surroundings. Met a nice guy in his late 40's one afternoon and we hit it off right away. Encountered his a couple more times and one afternoon went to my place for coffee. He's one of those men with a stocky muscular natural build, nice looking and with sexy strong and furry forearms - major turn on for me :) It wasn't long before we forgot the coffee and were headed for bed. That's when a major hook up dilemma hit me. He'd shaved totally his chest, stomach and groin - which I'd usually find odd, but not important. The problem was that this man had an very small hairless erect dick just lying there and made him look like a little boy. To add to this he gave me a little smile and said " don't I make a perfect sexy little boy just waiting fir his daddy". Even the thought of sex with a kid or even a 'pretend' one is so repulsive to me that this was the end of him for me. Sheer panic set in as to how to get rid of him as quick as possible without being too rude? Sometimes the gods really are on our side. Apparently he took my silent panic for assent and THAT turned him on and he grabbed his little dick and came after a few strokes! Never even had to touch him. The rest was easy to 'remember a prior commitment' and get rid of him. He'd had his orgasm, I was rid of him and at least he seemed happy. Aside from his unfortunate 'little boy/daddy' fantasy, he's also one of those men that think achieving orgasm is having sex. I'm sure more unusual things have happened to other men; this was just one of mine.