How Much Does it Cost to Have Sex?

Sex without love is a meaningless experience, but as far as meaningless experiences go its pretty damn good.” – Woody Allen

(Photo: dhammza)

Once my dating life took off and I started seeing a lot of people, I started to think about what would happen if I got someone pregnant even though the chance of that was small. It’s not that I have anything against being a father; it’s just like everything else, I want to do it on my terms when and if the time is right.

But unless a situation has an absolute zero chance of happening, given a long enough time line, it will happen. And even though I never have unprotected sex—given enough partners and enough time, it would eventually happen. But when? What are the odds and what would be the financial obligation if it did happen?

Since we have a rough estimate of how much it costs to raise a child and with statistics of the contraception failure rate, we can calculate roughly the cost each time you have sex.

So if you are having one-night stands or simply having casual sex, how much is it actually costing you to have sex? Let’s take a look.

First, let’s take a few knowns into our equation.


– It costs roughly $300,000 to raise a child. Let’s assume that you would be responsible for half of that. [1]

– Not all men are capable of having children, but for the sake of this calculation, assume that you are.

– 90% of women are capable of having children. [2]

– 4 out of 10 unwanted pregnancies end in an abortion. So even if you do get someone pregnant, there is still only a 60% chance that you will become a father. [3]

– A woman can get pregnant any time of the month but is most likely to do so around ovulation. Since a woman is least likely to have casual sex during menstruation and more likely during ovulation, let’s leave the time of the month you are having sex out of our equation.

– The odds of a woman who is capable of getting pregnant are roughly 4% each time she has sex. [4]


 

(Photo: Dollen)

 Let’s begin.


SEX SCENARIO 1:  Neither one of you uses protection.

10% of the women are not capable of having children, so the odds of your partner being able to have children are around 90%.

The odds of a woman, who can have children, getting pregnant during sex are roughly 4%. 

Odds of her keeping the baby are 60%.

.9 (odds of her being fertile) x .04 (odds of getting pregnant) x .6 (odds of her keeping the baby) = 2%

So the odds of you becoming a father if neither one of you uses any type of birth control is 2% or roughly 1 out of 50 chances.

Assuming that you have sex 5 times a week, it would take about 2.5 months of sex before you got someone pregnant if neither one is using any protection.

If we break down the 1 out of 50 chances of you getting someone pregnant and having a child with the cost to you being $150,000, it costs roughly $3000 to have unprotected sex ($150,000/50).


SEX SCENARIO 2:  The woman is on the “pill,” and you don’t wear a condom.

The most popular birth control method for women is the pill, which has roughly a 5% failure rate. [5]

Now the odds of her getting pregnant and keeping the baby are:

.9 (odds of her being fertile) x .04 (odds of getting pregnant) x .6 (odds of her keeping the baby) x .05 (odds of her birth control failing) = .1%

Or roughly 1 out of 1000.

Assuming that you have sex 5 times a week, it would take about 3.8 years of casual sex with a woman using birth control and you not wearing a condom before you had a baby.

If we break down the 1 out of 1000 chances of you getting someone pregnant and having a child with the cost to you being $150,000, it costs roughly $150 for you to have unprotected sex with a woman who is on birth control ($150,000/1000).


 SEX SCENARIO 3: Woman uses no birth control, and you wear a condom.

Condom failure rate is roughly 15%. [6]

.9 (odds of her being fertile) x .04 (odds of getting pregnant) x .6 (odds of her keeping the baby) x .15 (odds of condom failing) = .3%.

Or roughly 3 out of 1000.

Assuming that you have sex 5 times a week, it would take about 1.2 years of casual sex with a woman using no birth control and you wearing a condom before you had baby.

3 out of 1000 chances of having a child translate to roughly $450 each time you have sex with someone who is not using birth control while you are wearing a condom.


SEX SCENARIO 4: Woman uses birth control, and you wear a condom. 

.9 (odds of her being fertile) x .04 (odds of getting pregnant) x .6 (odds of her keeping the baby) x .05 (odds of her birth control failing) x .15 (condom failure rate) = .02 %

Or 1 out of 5000.

Assuming that you have sex 5 times a week, it would take about 19 years of casual sex before you had a baby if you and your partner were both using birth control.

If we break down the 1 out of 5000 chances of you getting someone pregnant and having a child with the cost to you being $150,000, it costs roughly $30 for you to have unprotected sex with a woman who is on birth control and with you wearing a condom.


SEX SCENARIO 5: Typical one-night stand, and you are wearing a condom.

Now let’s assume the most practical scenario, you have a one-night stand or casual sex and you wear a condom, but you do not know if the woman is on birth control or not.

38% of women do not use any type of birth control. [7]

So there is a 38% chance that we have Scenario 3 and a 62% chance that we have Scenario 4.

38% x (1000 / 3) + 62% x (5000 / 1) = 1 out of 3227

So, if you have a typical one-night stand, you have a 1 out of 3227 chance of having a child.

If you have sex 5 times a week, it translates to you having a child after 12.4 years.

And if we break it down even more, the true cost of having a one-night stand is $150,000/3227 or roughly $46.50


 

(Photo: Dollen)

So here’s a quick summary

Male Birth Control

Female Birth Control

Odds of Getting Pregnant and Having Your Child

How Long to Get Pregnant if you Have Sex 5 Times a Week

Cost each time you have sex (assuming it would cost you $150,00 to raise a child)

None

None

1 in 50

2.5 Months

$3,000.00

None

Pill

1 in 1000

3.8 Years

$150.00

Condom

None

3 in 1000

1.2 Years

$420.00

Condom

Pill

1 in 5000

19 Years

$30.00

Condom

?

1 in 3227

12.4 Years

$46.50

 

So now you know that the true cost of having sex is a bit more than just the cost of the dinner and wine. :)

Michael Page


Reference:

1. How Much Money Does it Cost to Raise a Child?
2. Infirtility Fact Sheet.
3. Fact on Induced Abortion in United States.
4. What are the odds of getting pregnant if you have sex only one time?
5. Overview Birth Control
6. Overview Birth Control
7. Fact on Induced Abortion in United States.

 

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Comments

  1. Interesting read.
    So if I use a condom but never ejaculate inside a woman then I guess it’s pretty much impossible for her to get pregnant?

  2. Hey Rian,

    Good question.
    From the Planned Parenthood site.
    http://www.plannedparenthood.org/health-topics/birth-control/withdrawal-pull-out-method-4218.htm

    “Some experts believe that pre-ejaculate, or pre-cum, can pick up enough sperm left in the urethra from a previous ejaculation to cause pregnancy. “

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_birth_control_methods

    If we count it as withdrawal method the odds then are roughly 27% failure rate X 15% condom failure rate = .27 X .15 = 4%. Although I think since you are not actually ejaculating than the odds are greatly reduced.

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