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Friday, October 15, 2010

Exclusive Survey: Sex and the city

16 going on Sex-teen

Sex Education


We, the people of India, have never shied away from the act of sex. We have our population statistics to vouch for it. But when it has come to discussing bedroom troubles with pals, taking expert advice in solving gratification problems or understanding the hormonal changes in our teenage sons and daughters, we have been found seriously wanting. Religious morality, laws drawn up in the Victorian Age, a quasi-feudal system, lack of education and exposure have all played their respective parts in restricting us. Of late, specially in our metros and some other cities, we have been perceiving a change where the morality of the religion is being slowly replaced by a sense based on concern for human rights and individual choices, restrictions are giving way to choices. There are miles to go and there always will be. Many states in the US are still debating whether to legalise abortion. Of course, there are consequences: some positive, some adverse. But there is no point denying it. Without any more foreplay, let's get into the act. Please turn over the page.

The survey has been conducted using a structured questionnaire amongst a randomly selected sample of 1,244 respondents. The survey has been conducted in the five metros of Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata and Chennai in the age group of 18-35 years. The answers are collected from respondents belonging to SEC A1, A2 and B1 segments wherein 1,124 are men and 120 are women. Most women refrained from taking the survey and hence the fairer sex's sample size covered under the purview of the survey is only about 10 per cent. Out of the total samples, 821 men are married & are living with their spouses and 303 are bachelors. Women surveyed are mostly unmarried. Forty seven female respondents are married and are living with their spouses.

Have you ever had sex?

This is the best start for the survey. All 1,244 respondents have had sex. We did not come across a single celibate in a country of renunciation.

With whom did you have your first sexual experience?

Chastity and virginity are prized possessions no more. Finding out whether a couple is sexually compatible seems to be the in thing.

What is the maximum number of times you've had sex in a day?
If anyone says Indians are sexually inactive, just rattle off the following figures to shut him/her up.

At what age did you first have sex?

Teens and young adults are definitely experimenting with their lives, in tune with figures reflected in global surveys.

How many partners have you had in the last 1 year?

The bulwark of monogamy is still managing to hold out but the figures show that polygamy is on the rise.

Do you currently have a steady sexual partner?

Just like with their savings habit, Indians prefer to have things steady in their bedroom too. But a substantial number of people don't mind rocking the boat.

Have you ever experimented with role-playing and/ or sex toys?

Indians are definitely not the kinkiest of the lot but the lack of availability of sex toys in the domestic market seems to have been a spoilsport for the 23 per cent.

How was your first experience like?

Indians are no more sexually ignorant. The high percentage of 'Excellent' markers and the fact that they remember the occasion are pointers enough.

What do you think about pre-marital sex?

The moral police is completely out of sync with today's young India. An overwhelming majority don't consider this as a taboo any more.

Do you believe sex gives equal pleasure to both men and women?

Sex is no more for the pleasure of the men alone. Well, was it ever? India is frequently ridiculed abroad as a land where women never have orgasms. Hope this leads to a change of that perception.

Have you ever used an escort/massage parlour service for paid sex?

Visiting the red light area is passe. More than a-fifth of the respondents have had paid sex at the upmarket massage parlours or have ordered for home or hotel delivery.

Have you ever visited a red light area?

No matter how sexually liberated we become, visiting a red light area still means a lowly act and there is the fear of contracting diseases. May be, legalisation of the trade will lead to different findings.

Have you ever paid for sex?

We always knew the Indian aversion to pay for water. The same logic goes here. Why pay for something that comes for free? Not that a few don't differ, just like mineral water drinkers.

Is cyber café a better place to have sex?

Cyber cafe and sex? Yes, in India's Tier-II & III cities, this is the best haunt for adult fun and escapades. And it seems more than one-fourth of India's metro dwellers agree wholeheartedly.

Escapades in the park are no longer possible

Blame it on the moral police or those in uniform, the slight of the open umbrella on a park bench has lost its fatal attraction.

Most often you turn to sex for

We are amazed to find that people have managed to create watertight categories with little chance of osmosis or diffusion.

Have you ever encountered/ indulged in office sex?

Now, this takes guts and, as some say, lack of private spaces. An overwhelming majority seems to find it uncomfortable and risky. But the five per cent, one has to agree, are those men and women who will beat the others hands down in a libido count. May be, sex fraught with danger increases the pleasure factor.

Have you ever gone out specifically for a sex holiday?

Honeymoons are perfect example but the term sex holiday has an alternative feel. The good part of this holiday is that you don't need to spend on exotic destinations as you are not likely to leave your air-conditioned room.

How do you rejuvenate your sex life?

You don't usually associate boredom with this act but there is a need to spice it up once in a while. This is one matter on which every respondent unanimously feels that there is a need to rejuvenate his/her sex life. Used to the daily grind in the office, this is somewhere you can probably get a bit creative as well.

Do you believe that sex also takes place at the workplace?

Honestly speaking, there is nothing to believe or disbelieve. This is not a matter of faith. It happens for sure. You either know it or you don't. But it seems that a few people are not even interested.

Given a choice where would you like to have sex?

Here the placid Indian makes himself/herself heard again. The 'car'walas seem to be inspired by Hollywood. Office work can get you fired and workout in the park may land you in jail. But the elements of risk and danger can surely be more exciting.

Do you expect the woman/man you marry to be a virgin?

Indians are practical people. So they don't expect a miracle. Young people in the cities also place compatibility higher than chastity and virginity on a priority list when it comes to choosing partners.

If you live separately, do you enjoy your sex life more?

A majority thinks sex is a matter between two individuals and having your mom and dad in the next room makes you tone your voice down. Those who live in three-storey mansions don't agree but they are a lucky minority.

Do you use any kind of protection for safe sex?

The fear of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases has led to greater use of condoms. Emergency contraceptive pills and other means lag far behind.

Have you ever had unprotected sex and woken up worried?

It's obvious most Indians plan in advance. After all, giving into momentary lapses of reason is not really our cup of tea. A few people have burnt their hands once but then, some don't seem to have learnt anything at all.

Would you forgive your partner if he/she cheated on you?

Now, this is sensitive territory. A sexual revolution may be sweeping India but only a handful are sure about forgiving their partner. All religions talk about forgiving sinners. Can we take a cue from this?

Do you think live-in relationships lead to a better sex life?

Today's youths definitely like no-strings-attached relationships. But then, is live-in that much different from marriage in case you don't live in a joint family?

Are you satisfied with your sex life?

In spite of all talks about conservatism, taboos and social backwardness, in the end what matters most? And it seems that we are faring pretty well.

What are your views on gay sex?

Now, who would have guessed that a country where gay sex is punishable by law would have thrown up the following results? But with prominent citizens coming out of the closet and the political and judicial class reviewing age-old codes and laws based on Victorian morality, the LGBT cause has got a new lease of life.

Do you think sex education should be given to children?

No child is immune to sex education, no matter whether she learns it at school or not. The point is to choose between teaching and self-discovery. Both have positives but the latter is a riskier proposition.

How important is sex in your life?

Sigmund Freud saw sex drive or libido as the single most important driving force of all human endeavours. It seems people largely agree with him.

For more articles, Click on IIPM Article.

Source : IIPM Editorial, 2010.

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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