By Beth Main
A Shanghai pregnancy hotline has reported that the average age that a female Shanghai student loses her virginity has fallen from 19,5 years in 2007 to 18.6 years this year. The young ladies are losing their V-cards in motels, love hotels and daily-rental apartments near university. About 31 percent admit to not using a condom.
Premarital sex is on the rise in China and among these sexually active female college students, on average 25 percent said they have had unexpected pregnancy. The Shanghai hotline, run by the Shanghai No. 411 Hospital of the People’s Liberation Army, has received more than 50,000 phone calls since 2005 and offered help to 4,400 pregnant students.
However let’s put this in perspective. On average virginity is lost significantly later in Asia and Latin America than in Africa, Europe and North America. Reportedly the average male loses his virginity at age 16.9; females average slightly older, at 17.4.
“One student has had six abortions in her first two years in college,” said Dr Cheng Xiaomei, a consultant of the hotline. “When we told her she may never be able to get pregnant and have her baby due to frequent abortions, she cried.”
It is clear that China needs to improve sexual education in schools so that young female students like these understand how to have safe sex and what the consequences of using abortion as a contraceptive method can be.