On the Link Between Benevolent Sexism and Orgasm Frequency in Heterosexual Women
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Previous research on subclinical orgasmic difficulties among women has focused on intrapsychic and interpersonal variables, but little attention has been paid to the more distal ideological factors that might indirectly constrain sexual pleasure. We hypothesized that women’s endorsement of a benevolently sexist worldview would be negatively associated with orgasm frequency. Specifically, we predicted that benevolent sexism would be associated with increased perceptions of male sexual selfishness. This perception of men as interested in their own sexual pleasure would then predict decreased willingness to ask a partner for sexual pleasure, which in turn would be associated with less frequent orgasms. We found support for our model across two studies (Study 1: N = 339; Study 2: N = 323). We did not, however, find a direct effect of benevolent sexism on orgasm frequency. We discuss possible additional variables linking benevolent sexism with orgasm frequency, implications, and future directions.
KeywordsBenevolent sexism Orgasm Sexual functioning Gender beliefs
Compliance with Ethical Standards
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the University of Queensland Human Ethics Committee, the Australian National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research, and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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