|Virginity; There are varying understandings as to which types of sexual activities result in loss of virginity. The traditional view is that virginity is only lost through vaginal penetration by the penis, consensual or non-consensual, and that acts of oral sex, anal sex, mutual masturbation or other forms of non-penetrative sex do not result in loss of virginity.|
By contrast, gay or lesbian individuals often describe such acts as resulting in loss of virginity.[Some gay males regard penile-anal penetration as resulting in loss of virginity.
Male sexuality is seen as something that is innate and competitive and displays a different set of cultural values and stigmas from female sexuality and virginity. In one study, scholars Wenger and Berger found that male virginity is understood to be real by society, but it has been ignored by sociological studies.
The prevalence of virginity varies from culture to culture. In cultures which place importance on a female's virginity at marriage, the age at which virginity is lost is in effect determined by the age at which marriages would normally take place in those cultures, as well as the minimum marriage age set by the laws of the country where the marriage takes place.
Some studies suggest that people commence sexual activity at an earlier age than previous generations. However, the 2005 Durex Global sex survey found that people worldwide are having sex for the first time at an average age of 17.3, ranging from 15.6 in Iceland to 19.8 in India] (though evidence has shown that the average age is not a good indicator of sexual initiation, and that percentages of sexually initiated youth at each age are preferred). A 2008 survey of UK teenagers between the ages of 14 and 17 (conducted by YouGov for Channel 4), showed that only 6% of these teenagers intended to wait until marriage before having sex.
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