~ 63% women indicated that they are awkward to initiate this conversation~
In a survey conducted by dating platform TrulyMadly to assess the understanding of physical and sexual well-being among young adults, it has emerged that social stigma and lack of awareness around the subject continues to be prevalent among Generation Z and Millennials. The survey was conducted among 2,500 adults in the age group of 18 to 35 years across metros and non-metro cities.
Infographic_Safe LoveThe findings also indicate that while Gen Z and Millennials clearly understand ‘consent’ as a prerequisite for engaging in sexual activity, both generations fear being judged for their thoughts when talking about sex in a serious relationship. Interestingly, the stigma is found to be more prevalent in the otherwise progressive Gen Z – age group 18 – 24 years – with 59% of them indicating that they feel shy initiating conversations around the subject in a serious relationship. The fear of being judged also emerged as a common factor among millennials, with 53% indicating that they feel shy or awkward talking about sex in a serious relationship.
Nearly 50% of the younger respondents in the survey had limited or no awareness about sexually transmitted diseases. This is more prominent in non-metro cities such as Bhopal, Indore, Jaipur, and Lucknow, with 47% of respondents indicating that they do not understand the implications of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), Sexually Transmitted Disease (STDs) and Reproductive Tract Infections (RTIs).
Around 55% of the respondents from non-metros also indicated that they would depend on their friends, use the internet for home remedies or seek a medical opinion by themselves regarding any sexual or reproductive disease or infection, indicating apprehensions of seeking help of family in case of any health risks.
Lack of sex education and knowledge around contraceptives that culminate into unhealthy sexual practices and reproductive ill-health continue to emerge as large issues that plague young adults in India.
The taboo is more pronounced among women with 63% indicating that they feel shy. Interestingly, despite the taboos they face, 76% of women appeared to be more confident in purchasing condoms on behalf of their partners.
The findings highlight the importance of a non-discriminatory and respectful platform for access to the right knowledge on sexual, reproductive health and well-being for the younger generation. Making strides in this direction and removing stigmas around the subject, TrulyMadly has been conducting a ‘Safe Love’ program since last year as part of which the dating app offers information and awareness to its community of users.
TrulyMadly Co-founder and CEO Snehil Khanor said, “Inspite of being progressive on most social issues, the younger generation continues to feel stigmatized when it comes to talking about sex in a relationship. We are breaking these barriers and making it easier for people to open up and be comfortable about their sexual health and well-being. Under our Safe Love initiative, we use technology to provide the socially savvy generation with accurate and complete information about reproductive health in a fun, easy-to-understand, and non-judgmental approach. In the long term, we hope this innovation will lead to a tangible increase in demand for quality reproductive and sexual health services and also free up the younger generation of societal overhangs which may come in the way of having meaningful relationships.” TrulyMadly, which is filling the gap between casual dating apps and matrimony websites, has been spearheading several initiatives to encourage the younger generation to take the onus of their love life for themselves and by themselves.