Being a Feminist (Female or Male) Is Good for Your Sex Life

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Check it out: something we feminists always knew is finally supported by researched evidence: having the courage, self-esteem and commitment to equality involved in identifying yourself as a feminist actually makes it more likely, not less, that you'll enjoy healthy relationships and find sexual satisfaction.

These are the conclusions of a study by Laurie Rudman and Julie Phelan of Rutgers, published this week in the journal Sex Roles. A press release about the article states that

It is generally perceived that feminism and romance are in direct conflict. Rudman and Phelan’s work challenges this perception. They carried out both a laboratory survey of 242 American undergraduates and an online survey including 289 older adults, more likely to have had longer relationships and greater life experience. They looked at men’s and women’s perception of their own feminism and its link to relationship health, measured by a combination of overall relationship quality, agreement about gender equality, relationship stability and sexual satisfaction.

They found that having a feminist partner was linked to healthier heterosexual relationships for women. Men with feminist partners also reported both more stable relationships and greater sexual satisfaction. According to these results, feminism does not predict poor romantic relationships, in fact quite the opposite.

The authors also tested the validity of feminist stereotypical beliefs amongst their two samples, based on the hypothesis that if feminist stereotypes are accurate, then feminist women should be more likely to report themselves as being single, lesbian, or sexually unattractive, compared with non-feminist women.

Rudman and Phelan found no support for this hypothesis amongst their study participants. In fact, feminist women were more likely to be in a heterosexual romantic relationship than non-feminist women. The authors conclude that feminist stereotypes appear to be inaccurate, and therefore their unfavorable implications for relationships are also likely to be unfounded.

So there you have it: it's not only personally rewarding to BE feminists, but to date and marry them.

2 Comments

It's not just good for your sex life, it's good for your life life.

I think that's great. Really, having a sense of self and an awareness of one's worth being as great as her man's worth can only help in the relationship arena (if the man is of equal mind). I imagine a feminist being married to a man who is stuck in the 1950s mindset of woman not being equal is likely to have problems. But...if a feminist is married to a man who feels the same about equality, this can only serve to strengthen their relationship.

I want that.

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This page contains a single entry by Holly published on October 16, 2007 2:32 PM.

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