Sexual gender norms promoting sexual prowess for men, but sexual modesty for women have been shown to negatively affect sexual and mental health in both men and women. Knowledge about the relationship between gender norms and sexual cognitions and emotions might further the understanding of continued gender-norm conformity. In the present study, we investigated whether and how gendered sexual attitudes are related to (positive and negative) sex-related emotions, via sexual cognitions (autonomy, body esteem, and approach/avoidance motives for sex). A survey was submitted to 293 heterosexually identified, sexually active, Dutch (central and southern regions) 18–25 year-olds. Results from a moderated mediation model (using structural equation modeling) revealed that women, but not men, who more strongly endorsed traditional gender-related sexual attitudes experienced significantly less positive and more negative emotions, as a result of decreased sexual autonomy and sexual body esteem as well as increased avoidance motives for sex. We conclude that, as a result of negative cognitions associated with the endorsement of traditional gender norms, women in particular are at risk of experiencing negative emotional outcomes in the sexual context. We argue that sexual cognitions and emotions deserve explicit attention in sex-positive and gender-transformative sexuality education, which has been proven to be a vital resource for achieving increased gender-equity in sexual and romantic relationships.
Sex Roles – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 8, 2016
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud