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Title: Sexual Health in Partnered Lesbians: Debunking the myths
Contributor(s): Lykins, Amy  (author)orcid ; Weeks, Gerald (author); Meana, Marta (author); Spicer-Rakipi, Remi (author)
Publication Date: 2006
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Abstract: Though the last decade has seen a surge of interest in female sexuality, this movement seems to have had little effect in mobilizing research on lesbian sexuality. Little is known about either normative sexual behavior or about the incidence of sexual difficulties in this population. Some researchers have argued that lesbian couples may have sex less frequently than heterosexual or gay couples, hence the term "lesbian bed death", but little empirical research exists to either confirm or disconfirm this myth. In an effort to examine lesbian sexuality, 100 women involved in a primary lesbian relationship were asked to complete a measure investigating sexual difficulties and dysfunction with various aspects of sex with their current partner. Results were compared to previous research on both heterosexual and gay couples. Similar to heterosexual and gay couples, the majority of the women in the sample rated their relationships very highly, stating they were either "happy" or "very happy". These women also reported a high level of sexual satisfaction in their relationships. In contrast to other women, lesbians reported significantly fewer sexual difficulties than heterosexual women, but no differences emerged between the lesbian women and either heterosexual or gay men. The most common problem reported was "reaching orgasm too quickly". Regression analyses showed that age was a significant predictor of frequency of sex and number of difficulties reported for self. Analyses suggest that the sexual life of lesbians is more robust than often reported. Relational dynamics that are possibly protective of lesbian sexual relationships include the very sexual practices that distinguish lesbian from heterosexual sex, the fact that women may know better how to please women than do men, and that lesbian couples tend to evidence greater cohesion than do heterosexual and gay couples. Clinical implications of re-assessing the nature and importance of sex to lesbian couples are discussed.
Publication Type: Conference Publication
Conference Name: SSSSWR Annual Conference 2006 - The Joys of Sexuality: Positive Meanings in Diverse Contexts, Redondo Beach, United States of America, 6th - 9th April, 2006
Conference Details: SSSSWR Annual Conference 2006 - The Joys of Sexuality: Positive Meanings in Diverse Contexts, Redondo Beach, United States of America, 6th - 9th April, 2006
Source of Publication: Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, Western Region Annual Conference Program
Publisher: Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, Western Region (SSSSWR)
Place of Publication: United States of America
Field of Research (FOR): 170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology
170105 Gender Psychology
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 920410 Mental Health
920507 Womens Health
HERDC Category Description: E3 Extract of Scholarly Conference Publication
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