Study finds gay and bi men aged over 70 more sexually active than straight men of the same age

Graham Robson September 10, 2023

A new study has found gay and bisexual men over 70 were more likely to have had more than one sexual partner recently than straight men of the same age.

The findings, which are part of a new study shedding light on people’s sex lives as they get older, show gay and bisexual men continued to have sex with multiple partners, while straight men and women became less sexually active as they get older.

University of East Anglia (UEA), King’s College London and University College London surveyed more than 5,000 adults during the 2022 mpox (monkeypox) outbreak, in an effort to look at how sexual behaviour changes with age, so they could develop scientific models for sexually transmitted infections.

Lead researcher Dr Julii Brainard, from UEA’s Norwich Medical School, said: “Before this study, many models about sexually transmitted diseases assumed that everyone over a certain age, say 40 or 65, stopped being sexually active, or at least stopped having multiple partners.

“Or there might be an assumption that young people have the most sex.

“But the answer is more nuanced, and it partly depends on people’s sexuality.”

Some 5,126 British adults were questioned, which included 3,297 sampled from the general population and 1,036 men who have sex with men (MSM) from Facebook and Instagram between 5 September of 6 October last year, with an additional 831 people responding to adverts on the gay dating app Grindr.

Women who have sex with women, and other relationship types, were discounted due to the small numbers responding.