Involuntary Celibacy

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Pg. 262-270
Reading Review #3

In this article, a number of authors (which include Denise Donnelly, Elisabeth Burgess, Sally Anderson, Regina Davis, and Joy Dillard) discuss the aspects of involuntary celibacy. In this research, an involuntary celibate is defined as "one who desires to have sex, but has been unable to find a willing partner for at least six months prior to being surveyed" (p. 262). Also within this research, the respondents fell into three categories: virginal celibates, single celibates, and partnered celibates. These categories help to get a better perspective of the experiences that these involuntary celibates have been through. This article helps others with understanding the lives and circumstances of involuntary celibates through a "life course perspective" (p. 263). The research in this article gives a good overview of some major reasons people become involuntarily celibate. Understanding the reasons why individuals may become or potentially stay involuntarily celibate can help with determining ways to revitalize one's sex life if they choose to do so. The researchers were actually able to gain information about this issue from participants who define themselves as involuntarily celibate and want to find comfort. Throughout this research, the involuntary celibate is given a voice, whereas most celibacy research is usually focuses upon people who are celibate by choice.

A major strength of this article is the usage of personal stories to help elaborate upon the information provided from the research and surveys. By doing this readers are able to become more personalized with the lives of these involuntary celibates. When one can get a look inside the life of another it just helps with understanding what someone may be going through. The personal stories within this article really shed light on the reasons why some involuntary celibates are unable to find appropriate partners. For example, a virgin female in the 18-24 age group...
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