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Lecture 9

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Lecture 9 - Sexuality: Naked Truths Gender Differences in Sexuality…  Largest difference in incidence of masturbation  73% M, 37% F report in the last month  Men more approving of casual sex  wmn regret their actions, men their inactions  Men spend more $ on sex (e.g., pornography, toys; Laumann et al., 1994)  Men would like to have sex with more people/ have it sooner in relationships Men masturbate more, like casual sex, spend more on sex, like to have sex with more ppl/sooner …a function of gender norms?  3 conditions: Exposure threat, Anonymous, Bogus Pipeline Gender-role-relevant sexual behaviour (masturbation, exposure to hardcore and softcore erotica)  Gender differences greatest in exposure threat condition; minimal gender differences in bogus pipeline condition  Men’s responses did not change b/w conditions When women think nobody will find out their answer, there’s less of a difference b/w gender answers – mens responses never change Gender norms ctd Some differences in sexuality may be exaggerated due to gender-differentiated normative pressures. Ex. Women seen as less sexual then men – don’t want to be judged harshly by others – same for men (maybe need to come across as more sexual then they really are) Female Erotic Plasticity (Baumeister, 2000)  1) Women show more changes in frequency & variety report more lifetime change in orientation (Kinnish et al., 2005) Heterosexual women report more changes in fantasies & attraction than heterosexual men Lesbian women report more changes in fantasies, attraction, & behaviour than gay men 65% of lesbian women report a different previous identification, 39% of gay men Erotic Plasticity= sex drive can be shaped by social, cultural, and situational factors.  2) Wmn show sexual arousal to both sexes High levels of sex drive as a test of the plasticity hypothesis; high sex drive may reveal “dominant response” (Lippa, 2006) Heterosexual men high in sex drive = more (reported) attraction to women Gay men high in sex drive = more attraction to men Heterosexual women = more attraction to men and women Inconclusive for lesbian women When watching sexual videotapes: Wmn’s genital arousal more related to level of sexual activity in films, men more responsive to sex of actor (Chivers et al., 2007)  3) Greater influence of sociocultural factors on wmn’s sexuality  4) Wmn show less attitude-behaviour consistency Men’s sexuality less malleable  Men may have an“imprinting”period Women show more changes in frequency/variety with who they like, etc. – women aroused by both sexes – less consistency with what women say and what they do  men may have imprinting period of either gay/straight and maybe that’s why they don’t have these differences Sexual orientation: Psychosocial Theories Sexual Orientation = a person’s erotic and emotional orientation towards members of his or her own gender or members of the other gender.  1) Freud  Heterosexuals: desire for other sex parent transferred outside of family to avoid conflict with same sex parent Gay men have strong fixation with mother b/c fear of castration, avoidance of competition w/ dad Lesbian women have more masculine character in hopes of own penis  2) Learning theory: Negative experiences with other sex (heterosexual sex was a punishment ) Other sex experience usually not negative, but less enjoyable  3) Seduction by elder  Most first experiences with same age partner  4) Early maturation  Weak data; same sex friends of heterosexuals  5) Exotic becomes erotic (Bem)  Ubiquity of same sex friends; similarity 1. Freud says lesbians want penis and gay men fixated with mom but fear dad (castration) – 2. Negative experiences with other sex led to changing orientation – 3. Seduced by older person of same sex can affect orientation – 4. Early maturation can lead to being gay – 5. What’s exotic is desired Sexual orientation: Biological Theories  1) Genes  Same sex attraction a heritable trait, Preliminary evidence for specific genes (found on chromosomes 7, 8 and 10) (Mustanki et al., 2005) Large twin study suggests genetic effects explained 35% variance in men’s orientation, 18% wmn  2) Pre-natal androgen Evidence for higher levels in lesbian women  Masculinized 2D:4D ratio, Masculinzed acoustic mechanisms, More left handedness -- Mixed evidence for gay men  3) Pre-natal antibodies Gay men more likely to have older brothers, May reflect build up of antibodies due to previous male births, These antibodies may influence development  Belief of biological/social determinants of sexual orientations affects attitudes Think sexual orientation biologically based/ immutable  more favourable towards homosexuality More pre-natal androgen in lesbians, some believe being gay is passed through genes (hereditary), gay men likely to have older brothers (build up on anti-bodies from older bro influenced being gay) Attachment and Sex: Anxious Attachment  Sexual Attitudes (Feeney & Noller, 2004): sex as a tool for intimacy  Sexual History (Cooper et al., 2006): Sex controlled by others, difficulty resisting pressure, avoid safe sex talk, less condom use, more unplanned pregnancies Anxious men: later first sex, less frequency, less partners, less cheating Anxious women: earlier first sex, more frequency, more cheating  Motivation for Sex (Impett et al.,2008) : engaging in sex to please one’s partner and express love  Sexual Fantasies (Birnbaum, 2011): wishes for intimacy and representations of others as more affectionate in sexual fantasies  Experience during sex (Birnbaum et al. 2006): Ambivalent feelings Less emotional satisfaction More desire for partner, more letting go Feel less loved More worries: feeling estranged, disappointed, interfering thoughts More focus on own pleasure  Effects on Relationship: Anxiety generally predicts using sex as a barometer (Davis et al., 2006) Relationship between sexual and marital satisfaction stronger for anxious individuals and ppl with more anxious spouses (Butzer & Campbell, 2008) Effects on perceived relationship quality amplified (Birnbaum et al. 2006) Daily sexual satisfaction buffers effects of anxiety on marital satisfaction (Little et al., 2010) Frequent sex can buffer negative effects of neuroticism on marital satisfaction (Russell & McNulty, 2010) Anxious people motivated to have sex by wanting to please others, sexual satisfaction depends greatly on sex in the relationship (ex. Feel less loved if don’t get it enough), daily sex brings down anxiety in marriage, use sex for intimacy Attachment and Sex: Avoidant Attachment  Sexual Attitudes: more accepting of casual sex and sex without love  Sexual History: Later first sex Less sex in relationships, more one night stands, more solitary activity, more dislike of intimate behaviour More safe sex talk and condom use More unwanted (consensual) sex, sex more controlled by others Avoidant men more likely to cheat  Motivation for Sex : engaging in sex to avoid negative relational consequences, -ly associated with engaging in sex to express love  Sexual Fantasies: avoidance-related wishes and representations of the self and oth
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