International World Work first, sex later: Chinese youth facing career pressure, no time for...

Work first, sex later: Chinese youth facing career pressure, no time for pleasure

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In a recent survey conducted by Chinese website 163.com, around 4,000 Chinese born between 1980 and early 1990 were asked about their sex lives. It has come into the attention of analysts and researchers alike that there has been a dry spell going around the young generation of the country; something which can become a problem such as a senior and dying population similar to what Japan is currently experiencing.

According to the survey, more than half of the respondents under the age of 25 were virgins with no sexual experience.

Maimai, a job-hunting website also conducted a study in 2017 and it yielded results similar to the survey. A surprising 47.1% of young professionals with less than 3 years of work experience were virgins while only 66% of those who’ve had 3-5 years of work experience have engaged in sexual activity.

China, which used to be quite strict in its sexual ideology has greatly become more lenient n the recent years but the youth is not taking advantage of this leniency. There are other obstacles standing in the way of a young professional to be fully enjoying both work and personal pleasures.

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Money issues and high standards

A 27-year old man, who wishes to be called Tian Jun, can go on for two years without sex. His girlfriend broke up with him two years ago and he has been focused on his 11-hour, 6-day a week work shift instead. Another 26-year old interior designer has shared that he has no time to start a love life because he travels 3 days a week due to work.

Photo: YouTube screengrab – Young working professionals

These are common scenarios with the Chinese working class, between 20 and 40 years of age, nowadays. They are burdened with the pressures of paying house mortgages, supporting parents and making a career that they have no remaining time for anything else such as finding a lifelong partner and settling down. The report by Maimai also showed a direct connection between sex and income. The higher the income, the more sex. Almost 70% of those with a monthly salary of 20,000 yuan ($2,898) had sex more frequently which means a very small number because the latest annual report by Zhaopin Limited states that the average monthly salary in China is 7,665 yuan ($1,110).

In addition to money issues, the young Chinese women of today have strict standards when it comes to a prospective partner’s financial standing while a man has high standards for their partner’s outward appearance.

The sex isn’t good

Another area of concern is the enjoyability of sex for those who engage in it. The report by Maimai showed that more than 60% of the Chinese youth are not satisfied with their experiences under the covers. While it is very hard to determine sexual satisfaction ratios (SSR) mainly because it is highly subjective, a lack of satisfaction does have an effect on the other aspects of someone’s life such as the workplace. A hard and stressful day at work can be forgotten with a pleasurable time in bed which can lead to a better day at work the next day. But if the middle component of this cycle is ineffective then the financial career pressures could build up single-handedly.

Humans are naturally social beings who need connection and emotional attachments. These cannot be made with fleeting one-night stands with strangers from dating apps. The Chinese youth today are very much exposed to these types of communication but there is very little opportunity to build lasting connections and satisfaction through this method.

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