Adverse effects of inceldom
Little is known about the adverse effects of inceldom because it is an understudied area. Most results only demonstrate a correlation, so one cannot tell whether it is inceldom that cause an adverse condition or vice-versa, or some other factor causing both. There are no longitudinal studies of incels who ascended or married.
Sexlessness reduces well-being, health and productivity[edit | edit source]
A 2008 study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that delaying sexual activity may "create health risks by impeding development of the emotional, cognitive, and interpersonal skills that are crucial to satisfactory sexual functioning and general well-being." By their definition, those who had their first sexual encounter at age 22 or older were considered "later starters."
A 2013 study by the Guttmacher Institute summarized a large number of results on sexual activity and sexual satisfaction being positively associated with improved physical and mental health outcomes. These positive associations even hold for the elderly.
Cohen (2019) found an overall rise in mortality among unmarried Whites U.S. men and women, in particular among marginalized Whites. Marriage appears to have a protective health effect, and Rendall (2011) found this is especially the case for men. A 2020 study found that the pursuit of evolutionary relevant goals—such as reproducing and caring for family members—help to foster a sense of purpose in life. However, another study based on a U.S. national survey (GSS), found sexlessness to be unrelated to self-reported happiness, though the large number of sexless elderly (especially women who have a lower sex drive in the first place), might water down the effect for young adult males who benefit the most from the reputation of having had sex.
A study from Greece found mating performance was significantly related to happiness and life satisfaction for both sexes. The authors suggest that a large population lacking sexual activity could negatively affect the economy due to a higher rate of demotivation and depressed people being a burden on welfare institutions. Indeed, the happiness of a country's population might boost its economic productivity. In the USA alone it is estimated that depression costs over $65 billion per year. Sex is also known to be the most pleasurable activity of all activities. Further, having sex boosts well-being on the following 48 hours ("sexual afterglow"). One study summarizes:
Beyond positive and negative affect, sex has implications for meaning in life. On days when people had sex, a greater sense of meaning in life was experienced the following day. Meaning in life often arises when an individual feels their basic need for belonging is met with someone (Hicks & King, 2009; Lambert et al., 2013). Sex requires a level of vulnerability and trust that readily facilitates opportunities for deep, meaningful social connection (Baumeister & Leary, 1995; Deci & Ryan, 2000).
Administering cohabiting couples to have more sex does not make them happier. Naturally occurring increases in sexual frequency and satisfaction over time, however, do predict corresponding increases in life satisfaction.
A survey study found that penile–vaginal intercourse is associated with health, but masturbation and anal sex are not. This suggests, inceldom has adverse effects, and cannot be remedied by masturbation, i.e. the issue of inceldom is not merely the lack of genital stimulation as bluepillsplainers like to claim.
Other benefits of sex:
- Longevity: A study of older adults found sex in the years after a heart attack decreased the risk of death by one-third.
- Job satisfaction: People had a better mood and more engaged with their jobs the day after they had sex.
- Immune system: University students who engaged in sexual activity a few times a week had higher levels of the antibody immunoglobulin A.
- Self-esteem: People who have sex tend to have higher self-esteem.
- Reduced blood pressure and stress: Sex reduces blood pressure.
- Cardiovascular health: Men who had sex once a month or less were 45% more likely to contract a cardiovascular disease.
- Workout: Average sex burns 85 calories (3.6 cal./min.).
- Relieves headaches: 60% of migraine sufferers and 37% of cluster headache sufferers felt better after sex.
- Sleep: Sex promotes better sleep.
Benefits of marriage[edit | edit source]
Being married more than doubled (2.4) the odds of a speedy recovery. Unmarried subjects were at a 42% higher risk of developing dementia (N = 800,000, UK). Marriage is associated with enhanced mental health. Individuals in committed relationships experienced fewer mental (not physical) health problems and were less likely to be overweight/obese (N = 1,621). In the UK, being married was the second most important factor in British men's happiness. Single men are the least happy, less than divorcees and even widows. There is a significant relationship between singlehood, somatic symptoms, anxiety and insomnia, severe depression, and romantic loneliness. Voluntary singles experience a lower level of romantic loneliness than involuntary singles. Less than 5% of singles preferred singlehood over being in a relationship, suggesting singlehood is an unpleasant state and that most are involuntarily single. A 2013 study out of Finland found that singles are twice as likely to die from an “acute coronary syndrome event,” such as a heart attack, and other heart-related issues. One study found singles are more than twice as likely to die from heart disease. This may be explained by warm partner contact decreasing cardiovascular stress, and daily physical touch from a romantic partner enhances well-being, particularly for those with attachment anxiety. Further, certainty about having a romantic partner reducing physical pain and stress. In one study, anxiety and depression scores were significantly lower in subjects sexually active during COVID-19 lockdowns. A different study found relationship status did not mediate the effect of the overall pandemic on emotional well-being, though incels did score lower overall than partnered subjects.
One study found having many sex partners is only weakly related to health. Also physical attractiveness is not very much related to health. This may serve as evidence that it is indeed sexual frustration causing illness and suffering than vice-versa. Out of various diseases, depression is the most related to ugliness, with 20% of ugly people and 11% of attractive people suffering from depression. This pattern may though rather be caused by social exclusion due to ugliness than ugly people being inherently more prone to depression.
Only 4% of the population older than 40 is happy not having offspring (15% of the childless older than 40), though childlessness at old age does not predict lower happiness levels in one study. See also the tradcon page for more discussions on this subject.
Benefits of belongingness[edit | edit source]
The extent to which sexual exclusion and frustration causes social exclusion seems to be unknown currently, but some research results suggest sexual status is quite important for men, e.g. women prefer men who have sex and sex may raise men's peer status. Clearer results exist for the adverse effects of social exclusion. A survey study by Roy Baumeister concluded belongingness is a fundamental need. Baumeister concludes quality is more important that quantity. "Having two as opposed to no close relationships may make a world of difference to the person's health and happiness; having eight as opposed to six may have very little consequence. Also more than two hours of socializing per day appears to have diminishing returns. Individuals with a melancholic disposition with close friends were indistinguishable from the controls without such disposition in terms of momentarily reported negative effect, social motivation and appraisal, suggesting social status among friends and/or socializing protect from depression.
Social stigma[edit | edit source]
A 2016 study by Gesselman et al. found being a sexual “late bloomer” may result in negative interpersonal consequences such as limited opportunities for romantic relationships and that sexually inexperienced adults perceived themselves to be stigmatized due to their inexperience and that sexually inexperienced adults were not highly desired as relationship partners. Some evidence suggests sexlessness may negatively affect men's social status, but positively women's status. There is also cross cultural evidence of this standard. Social constructionists in the social sciences call this sex difference and the shaming of female promiscuity "a double standard" that should be eliminated, but it is actually fairly straight forward to explain in terms of evolutionary psychology. Namely, women, but not men, can be certain their offspring is theirs. Men (and their parents) preferring virgin wifes reduces hence their chance of being cuckolded, and women can compete by denigrating one another's reputations of faithfulness (slutshaming), which they have done for much of human history.
Women also regard men who don't have sex as less attractive which may be related to assigning such men less social status (as women choose men based on their status). Women are more likely to state they would not want to date a virgin: 51% of women and 33% of men stated this in a survey by Match.com from 2013. The social desirability bias could even play a role here and make the truth even worse. Another study found virgins more likely felt stigmatized and also that women are more disinclined to date a virgin male. Such stigma may result from being perceived as incompetent at something that comes as natural as breathing to most people.
More negative effects for men[edit | edit source]
As discussed above, virginity is actually beneficial for women, hence sexlessness should be more negative for men, also because men are overall held to higher standards and women are more likely be cared for like children. Even though results discussed above suggest poor mating performance negatively affects both genders, in the manosphere it has often been suggested that women's complaining and suffering is not comparable to that of a man, much like a child crying for not getting what they want does not warrant therapeutic attention (see also fake depression). Due to women's natural dependence on men, women are cared for whereas men need to prove themselves.
In a large study of depression, conducted across 23 countries, being single or widowed was a stronger risk factor for depression for men than for women. Likewise being widowed, especially for young men, also increases the odds of suicide dramatically more for men, suggesting women have a less intense and more transactional love style. One study found male singles are unhappier than female singles. Being single is a greater risk factor for developing depression in men than in women. Controlling for various demographic factors, the odds of dying within the next year are 1.33 times greater for an unmarried man than for a married man, but are only 1.14 times greater for unmarried women. Marriage is protective for survival for both men and women, and that a survival premium accrues to men.
Exclusion from welfare[edit | edit source]
In some countries, couples receive tax-breaks, something that nearcels, truecels, incels and other types of singletons are not entitled to. There is often also a lot of social pressure to get a partner from family members, friends and cultural institutions. When incels don't live up to these social demands, there are sometimes consequences. The lack of validation from another person in turn also leads to depression. Such differentiation in taxation may end up feeling like an unfair two-tier system for the person who gets taxed more.
Loneliness[edit | edit source]
Incels also often experience loneliness which may in part be caused by being ashamed of their lack of sexual success. Incels are also often depressed, e.g. in an informal survey, 49.3% of incels.co users reported to have no friends. Whether inceldom causes loneliness or vice-verse, is unclear but both are plausible. Loneliness is associated with a large array of diseases, sometimes causally. Loneliness has an expected negative effect on health comparable to chain smoking or obesity. Anticipated loneliness has been shown to reduce intelligent thought with large effect size. Social exclusion max also decrease prosocial behavior. Warm partner contact reduces circulatory and heart stress, also with large effect size, which may explain earlier cardio-vascular failure in lonely people.
Depression[edit | edit source]
Incels are often depressed, e.g. in an informal survey, 59.4% of incels.co users reported to be depressed. Again, whether inceldom causes depression or vice-versa, is unknown but both is plausible. There exists evidence that depression permanently damages brain functions and lowers IQ. Recovery from depression largely restores cognitive performance, but some deficits remain, possibly especially in verbal performance. Some of this may be caused by permanent shrinkage of the hippocampus, possibly caused by cell death due to stress.
Driver of depression could besides social exclusion also be that one feels bad for not accomplishing what all one's ancestors have accomplished, that is reproducing. One becomes a genetic dead end (GDE). Despite the fact that some people rejoice at the prospects of being childless, claiming that this has afforded them freedoms and allowed them to focus on their careers etc., there are also setbacks to being childless. Having offspring can give a person meaning to life, and can be rewarding to raise another human, and children often bring one joy. What compounds the GDE resulting from inceldom, is that unlike GDE from choice, a person on the inceldom spectrum is childless notwithstanding their own will. Being an incel in general is a source of embarrassment by virtue of belonging to a minority.
A simple Darwinian argument can also be made that people should feel shitty when they cannot gain access to reproductive opportunities. From a Darwinian perspective, this is the worst place to be in, as one cannot propagate one's genes. For this reason, one would expect negative emotions like depression to have evolved that disincentivize men from accepting their inceldom. The explanation is simple: Individuals with a mutation to embrace their inceldom were outreproduced by those who didn't, in fact they did not reproduce at all. This does not necessarily mean people's mood is expected to be in proportion to their reproductive success (it isn't), but it is in proportion to other heuristic conditions that have evolved to incentivize reproduction (status, orgasms, warm body contact, socializing etc.). Therefore, GDE is probably a bit of a meme.
Non-cooperativeness[edit | edit source]
Men without prospects for sex or relationships may be less likely to feel inclined to cooperate with the rest of society and may even become violent.
Indeed there are various indications enabling more men to get sex by enforcing monogamy decreases violence and conflict: Strong pair-bonding between males and females is thought to be accompanied by a dramatic reduction in the male-to-male conflict over mating and an increased investment in offspring. Heinrich et al. suggested cultural evolution may have selected monogamy because of its beneficial effects: Monogamy suppresses intrasexual competition and reduces the number of unmarried men, thereby reduces crime rates, including rape, murder, assault, robbery and fraud. By shifting male efforts from seeking wives to paternal investment, normative monogamy increases savings, child investment and economic productivity. By increasing the relatedness within households, monogamy reduces intra-household conflict, leading to lower rates of child neglect, abuse, accidental death and homicide. In a cross-cultural study of correlates of crimes in 44 non-literate societies (a people or culture without a written language), monogamous societies had substantially lower rates of theft (r = -.58) and personal crime (r = -.44) than polygynous ones.
Seffrin (2016) analyzed data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent and Adult Health (Add Health) which indicates men who transition to a monogamous, or less competitive, mode of sexual behavior reduce their risk of violence. Changes in sexual behavior were shown to be more consistent and stronger in predicting violence than marriage and employment. Some of this effect may be due to decreased testosterone. But it may also come from a reduced need to compete for women. In fact competition over women is cross-culturally the second most common reason for death. The pattern may also in part stem from the very extreme of aggressive men being less capable of forming stable bonds. In primitive cultures, impressing and pleasing women is commonly an incentive for men to engage in raids.
Polygynous societies have costlier, more dysphoric [unpleasant, violent] male rituals and rites of passage likely due to the greater competitiveness of the loose sexual bonds.
Evolutionary psychology suggests most intergroup conflicts were caused by the relative availability of fertile women. An undersupply of women e.g. due to excessive polygamy, increases the chances of civil wars.
It should be noted that any correlation between singlehood and criminal behavior in men should be expected to be weakened by the fact that women tend to be attracted to psychopaths. From Seffrin's paper above:
Men who show a willingness to take risks, have a high self-esteem, and a body that is physically imposing possess qualities that women may find desirable, but these qualities are also correlated with aggressive behavior (Apicella, 2014; Baumeister, Smart, & Boden, 1996; Brewer & Howarth, 2012; Frederick & Haselton, 2007; Sellet al., 2009).
More violence and less cooperative men should also negatively affect the economy.
Erectile dysfunction[edit | edit source]
Depression and stress may result in delayed ejaculation, i.e. the difficulty or inability of a man to reach an orgasm and to ejaculate semen, and potentially impotence. Even more likely is medication-induced erectile and orgasmic difficulties; the SSRIs that are commonly prescribed to treat depression are notorious for causing these side-effects. It is estimated that 35% to 50% of people taking an SSRI will experience some form of sexual dysfunction. Given the high prevalence of depression among incels, this is of particular interest to that group.
Men who lose their virginity in their 20s, in particular, are more likely to experience sexual problems that include difficulty becoming sexually aroused and reaching orgasm say researchers at Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute's HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, in a study in the January 2008 issue of the American Journal of Public Health.
STD proneness[edit | edit source]
Some suggested the lack of sexual activity poses an increased risk for catching STDs.Template:Dubious The reason for this could be that due to the lack of contact to STD pathogens, incels will not develop an immunity against these pathogens. Incels may be particularly reckless regarding safe sex in the rare opportunities for sex they have, also possibly increasing the risk of infection.
Death grip syndrome[edit | edit source]
The death grip syndrome (DGS) refers to a loss of sensation in the penis from excessive masturbation. According to sexpert Dan Savage, when this friction stems from repeated or learned forms of masturbation, the result may be an inability to orgasm. Men with DGS are much more likely to break up due to their partners' resulting self-esteem issues. The loss of penile sensation in the DGS is similar to that cased by a high-cut circumcision, see also the circumcision blackpill.
Hulseyism[edit | edit source]
Some in the incelosphere suggested hulseyism (prolonged erections) may be another possible side effect of prolonged sexlessness. The reason may be that lack of sexual outlets results in sexual frustration and unbridled horniness. On the other hand, the stress associated with being a loser in sexual regards may also reduce sex drive and potency as mentioned above.
Benefits of celibacy[edit | edit source]
Benefits of celibacy include avoidance of sexually transmissible diseases as well as the avoidance of having to take on responsibility for offspring. Provided that factors increasing the chances of inceldom, depression and social exclusion like autism, shyness, poor looks, low ability (for men) etc. are somewhat genetically heritable, there is a chance the offspring will experience a similar degree of suffering, though especially among youngcels such genetic factors are unlikely the main cause of inceldom. Further, many women are very difficult to deal with as they are often hypergamous, sneaky, slutty, solipsistic, gossipy, childish and have a mismatching (lower) sex drive. While marriage itself might provide men with a sense of meaning, status, comfort and emotional support, having children is generally detrimental to career success as evidenced by the most accomplished scientists and thinkers often being childless. However, few people report to regret having children (see tradcon).
References[edit | edit source]
- Kepler SB, et al. 2019. Frequency of sexual activity and long-term survival after acute myocardial infarction. DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amjmed.2019.06.019
- Leavitt K, et al. (2017). From the bedroom to the office: Workplace spillover effects of sexual activity at home. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0149206317698022
- Charnetski CJ, et al. (2004). Sexual frequency and salivary immunoglobulin A (IgA). DOI https://doi.org/10.2466/pr0.94.3.839-844
- Vragalova Z, et al. (2014). Who benefits from casual sex? The moderating role of sociosexuality. DOI https://doi.org/10.1177%2F1948550614537308
- Brody S. (2006). Blood pressure reactivity to stress is better for people who recently had penile-vaginal intercourse than for people who had other or no sexual activity. DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsycho.2005.03.005
- Liu H, et al. (2016). Is sex good for your health? A national study on partnered sexuality and cardiovascular risk among older men and women. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1177%2F0022146516661597
- Ebrahim S, et al. (2002). Sexual intercourse and risk of ischaemic stroke and coronary heart disease: the Caerphilly study. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1136/jech.56.2.99
- Frappier J, et al. (2013). Energy expenditure during sexual activity in young healthy couples. DOI https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0079342
- Hambach A, et al. (2013). The impact of sexual activity on idiopathic headaches: an observational study. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0333102413476374
- Lastella M, et al. (2019). Sex and sleep: Perceptions of sex as a sleep promoting behavior in the general adult population. DOI https://dx.doi.org/10.3389%2Ffpubh.2019.00033