Presentation on theme: "Sexuality in Adulthood"— Presentation transcript:
1 Sexuality in Adulthood Chapter SevenSexuality in Adulthood
2 Sexuality in Adulthood Mature sexual expressionSexual orientation is determinedIntegrate sexuality and relationshipsEstablish personal sexual philosophyChanges occur as we ageHealth issues change
3 Developmental Concerns Establishing sexual orientationIntegrating love and sexForging intimacy and making commitmentsMaking fertility/childbearing decisionsPracticing safer sexEvolving a sexual philosophy5
4 Establishing Sexual Orientation Understanding your sexual orientationAccepting your sexual orientationIt may be difficult for gay/lesbian orientation
6 “The world is not divided into sheep and goats.”…. “Nature rarely deals in discrete categories. Only the human mind invents categories and tries to force facts into separated pigeonholes. The living world is a continuum in each and every one of its aspects. The sooner we learn this concerning human sexual behavior the sooner we shall reach a sound understanding of the realities of sex.” (Kinsey et al., 1948)
7 Statistics on Sexual Orientation Difficult to obtain reliable statistics vs. estimates due to stigma10% women report lesbian orientation4% men report gay or bisexual orientationA great deal of experiential diversity is reportedRemember that sexuality is more than behavior; it includes attraction and desire, not just participating in sexual activity
8 The Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual Identity Process Takes time and includes several phasesHomoeroticism typically precedes activityFear or suspicion about being differentLabels feelings of desire, attraction, and love as “gay” or “lesbian” feelingsSelf-definition as gay, lesbian, or bisexual
9 The Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual Identity Process—Additional Phases First same-sex love affair, marking commitment to unifying sexuality and affectionBecoming involved in gay/lesbian/bisexual culture (gay/lesbian friends, support groups)Coming out (public acknowledgement) self-validation and self-affirmationInternalized homophobia – a set of negative attitudes and affects toward homosexuality in other persons and toward same-sex attraction in oneself.
10 Being SingleGreater sexual experience – Non-marital sex is becoming the norm.Widespread acceptance of cohabitationUnintended pregnancies occurIncreased numbers of abortions and births to single womenGreater numbers of separated and divorced single men and womenA rise in the number of single-parent families
11 The College Environment College dating is different from high school datingHow so?Sexuality relates to learning one’s self identityMoral standards tied to behavior (Standards – abstinence, double standard, permissiveness with affection, permissiveness without affection)Liberating atmosphere for gay, lesbian, and bisexual students
12 The Singles World Ages 25-40 Emphasize recreation and entertainment Challenge to meet potential partnersSexual experimentation vs. celibacyGay, lesbian, bisexual businesses and neighborhoods promote acceptanceEthnic and religion expectations can pose special challenges
13 CohabitationIn 2011, there were 25 million cohabitating couples, up from 6 million in 2005.1 in 4 women and 3 in 10 men (2000 data)New norm (see also figure 7.5, p.201)Open-minded approach toward sexualityPermanence is increasingly replaced by serial monogamy—succession of marriages—whereby the average marriage now lasts approximately 7 yearsYoung adults are continuing to defer marriage
14 Cohabitation: Advantages Financial – tentative relationshipEgalitarian roles not “husband” “wife” roleAffirmation of relationship – together because they “want to be”Domestic partner benefits
15 Cohabitation: Disadvantages Parental non-acceptance of child supportFinancial issues tied to parental support or credit – income not viewed as joint income.Reproduction- social stigmata of childrenExtra relational sex more likelyIncreased likelihood of divorce after marriage
16 Cohabitation: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual Couples One in nine couples cohabitating were same sex in 2000, about 1 in 8 in 2005.States are currently dealing with legal forms of union for same sex couplesFor gay men, lesbian women, and heterosexual individuals, intimate relationships provide love, romance, satisfaction, and security.
17 Cohabitation: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual Issues The relationships of gay men and lesbian women have been stereotyped as less committed than those of heterosexual couples because of the following reasons:Lesbian women and gay men cannot legally marry in the vast majority of states.They may not appear to emphasize sexual exclusiveness.Heterosexuals misperceive love between lesbian and gay partners as somehow less “real” than love between heterosexuals.Some heterosexuals view same-sex relationships as a threat to traditional marriage.Regardless of their sexual orientation, most people want a close, loving relationship with another person.
18 Cohabitation: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual Issues Non-traditional gender rolesMany lesbian and gay relationships resist the traditional heterosexual provider/homemaker roles. Among heterosexual couples, these divisions are often gender-linked as male or female. In same-sex couples, however, tasks are often divided pragmatically, according to considerations such as who likes cooking more (or dislikes it less) and who works when.Although gay couples emphasize egalitarianism, if there are differences in power, they are attributed to personality; if there is an age difference, the older partner is usually more powerful.
19 Sexuality in Middle Adulthood: Developmental Concerns In the middle-adulthood years, family and work become especially important. Personal time is spent increasingly on marital and family matters, especially if a couple have children. Sexual expression often decreases in frequency, intensity, and significance, to be replaced by family and work concerns. Sometimes, the change reflects a higher value placed on family intimacy; other times, it may reflect habit, boredom, or conflict.6
20 Sexuality in Middle Adulthood: Developmental Concerns (see concerns, p Redefining sex in marital or other long-term relationshipsReevaluating one’s sexualityAccepting the biological aging process6
21 Marital Sexuality Frequency of sexual interactions May occur more frequently with sanction of marriageMay decrease the longer a couple is together - For dual-worker families and families with children, stress, financial worries, fatigue, and lack of private time may be the most significant factors in the decline of frequency.Sexual satisfaction and pleasure are reported more commonly in married couples
22 Marital SexualityThe moral and social sanction of sex within marriage can affect sex lifeSexual intercourse tends to decrease in frequency the longer a couple is marriedDecreased frequency does not indicate decreased importance or enjoymentFatigue and lack of private time are important factorsSexual satisfaction and pleasure are higher in marriage than in singlehoodAdult love relationships often have complex expectations: emotional stabilization, shared time and values, personal enrichment, security, and support, to name a few (Figure 7.8, p.205).
23 Divorce and AfterPost-divorce singlehood is a relatively new phenomenonIn 2000, 10% of men and 13% of women were either separated or divorced, the overall divorce rate was 4.2 %. Rate has dropped to 3.6 % overall by 2008, and 5.2% in 2011 (less marriage)Marriage to divorce ration about 50% in 2009Scholars suggest that divorce represents an idealization of marriageHigher expectations lead to higher failure ratesThe permanence of marriage is no longer widely upheld
24 Consequences of Divorce There is often stigmatization by family, friends, and co-workers.There is a change of income (usually a substantial decline for women and their children).There is a higher incidence of physical, emotional, behavioral, and social problems among both men and women, including depression, injury, and illness.There are significantly more problems with children, including criminality, substance abuse, lower academic attainment and performance, earlier sexual activity, and a higher rate of divorce.Children are twice as likely as those in two-parent families to develop serious psychiatric problems and addictions later in life.Many individuals report being less close to their parents and, if they marry, are more likely to get divorced than persons from two-parent families.
25 Dating AgainEngaging in sexual behavior with someone following separation is significantHelps people accept their single statusFreedom of expressionDating is more focused and less leisurely
26 Single Parenting Families headed by single parents – mostly women Single parents not often part of the “singles world”Presence of children affects divorced women’s sexual activity and children may be judgmental of parents involved in another relationship.
27 Sexuality in Late Adulthood: Developmental Concerns Biological changesChanging with physical abilitiesChanges in sexual responseAvailability of a partnerSpousal lossMonotony may lead to loss in sexual practicePsychological influencesPsychological influences – “appropriateness of sex if you are old”7
28 Stereotypes of Aging Thought of as a lonely and depressing time Sexuality of older Americans tends to be invisible – society discounts their sexualitySexuality is defined by activities of younger participants – romance and love is associated with the youngEmotional, sensual, and relational aspects is not readily recognized – but intimacy is especially valued in the elderly
29 Sexuality and AgingThe emotional, sensual, and relationship aspects of sexuality are enjoyed regardless of ageMen fear loss of sexual capacity, women fear loss of attractivenessSexual activities occur in aging population – at least 50% are satisfied with their sex life and more than half feel it is a critical factor in their lifeHealth can affect sexual habits
30 AARP 2005 Survey1/3 of respondents report having sexual intercourse weeklyMajority agreed emphasis on sex is excessive2/3 discuss sexual satisfactionHealth influences sexual satisfactionMany have identified issues to increase satisfactionSexuality remains an essential element in the lives of individuals 45 and over (AARP, 2010), although men and women tend to view aging differently. For men, sex is far more important to the overall quality of life—and more critical to a good relationship.
31 Older Americans’ Frequency of Sex Satisfaction with Sex Life (AARP 2010)
32 Older Americans’ Frequency of Sex Satisfaction with Sex Life (AARP 2010)
33 Older Americans’ Frequency of Sex Satisfaction with Sex Life (AARP 2010)
34 Research Shows Higher Levels of Sexual Satisfaction in the Elderly Source- British Journal of Medicine
35 Women’s IssuesChange in fertility – don’t have to worry about pregnancyMenstruation lossMenopausal symptomsHot flashesLoss of bone massChanges in vaginaThe period of gradual change and adjustment is referred to as perimenopause.
36 Differences Women Report Pre- and Post-Menopause (ages 42-52) Majority report sexual activity and rate sexual activity as importantPrimary reason for not having sex was because of a lack of a partner.Over one third report decreased desire but not decreased satisfaction20% report sex may be painfulEthnic differences for engaging in sexual activity, emotional satisfaction, or physical pleasure were not found
37 Men’s IssuesMedical Concerns – increase risk of prostate cancer and presence of BPH.Less than 20% report difficulty with erection – requires more stimulation and more timeTestosterone supplementationmore popularSlower sexual responses may be reported – ejaculation takes longer or may not occur, and there is an extended refractory periodSlower responses are not related to ability to give or receive pleasure
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