Socio-Cultural Influences on Sexuality

Throughout the world, today people’s sexuality and their ability to negotiate for sex is generally and greatly controlled by values and norms that define masculinity and feminity. As early as infancy the process of socialization starts, to bring up the child in a manner that is acceptable to the way of life of the society in question (Taylor and Francis, 2004). Culture and religion has greatly controlled how human sexuality is advocated and discouraged among the youths. Most societies portray adolescent sex as demonic. Men are told that they shouldn’t do it, but they will end up doing it sometimes in the future. With women, they are given the impression that men are always beasts trying to make the sexual objects, and they shouldn’t give in to their demands. This creation of conflict in societies today places the modern man trying to be offensive while the woman is always on the defensive side. This ritualizes their relationship between males and females with males trying to increase their sexual behaviour since this is what gives them recognition among the peers and females resisting the efforts advanced to them. In married couples, femininity requires women to be submissive when it comes to sexual matters. While men are supposed to be experienced and dominant, this leaves them with no option of seeking to know matters related to sex and in turn leaves them with risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases (Bran and Lemann, 2004).

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It’s culturally accepted in some societies that men can have many wives, but women are not allowed to have many husbands. This is really unfair and biased toward women. In the current world, men are actually expected to have several extramarital affairs, but women are supposed to be monogamous, and not even to admire any other man outside marriage. In general, there has been a problem of merging the need of controlling sexual activity with that of promoting it in the right manner, to achieve this, taboos, myths and permissions have been used to control sex.

The ability to identify one as male or female is what is referred to as gender identity. Several roles have been described based on gender where by in a society women and men have separation of roles. Most of this oppress the women and give men an upper hand in all that goes on in the society be it opportunities in sexual exploits or general work.

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Religion was key in controlling the morality of society and attaining the goal of controlling sexuality. Although societies differ in what they consider sexually and socially acceptable and desirable, religion has come in to play a harmonised point of view. Christianity, Muslim, Hinduism, and Judaism are all religions that have their ways of controlling sex in the society. Considering that a man is a social being a great percentage of people would make their decisions regarding sex based on their society’s norms.

Many sexual stereotypes have been developed. Examples; women are less sexual than men, more fantasies, and experiences are more in men as compared to women, women don’t think about sex more than men and men are more polygamous than women. Finally, women only have sex when they fall in love. All these are stereotypes that are far from the truth.

According to Charles (2006), use of sex in advertising has its proponents and opponents. It tends to gravitate its efforts to attracting young males to buy whatever is advertised by the beauty. Strip clubs have been established, and now it’s a huge and booming business. Most of these clubs limit the age limit to either 21 years of age or 18 years; this is to create the notion that these people are able to make their own decisions. In the real sense, most 18 year old have just started going out on their own, and this greatly affects them and they may end up going to prostitution.

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In conclusion, societies differ in the ways they uphold sexual sanctity and the taboos and imposition they impose to youngsters as they continue to grow. The Demonization of sex during early stages of life finds its impact on how men and women relate sexually when they grow up. They only come to get to understand why they were diverted from having sex at a young age where by they grow up and they quickly turn to adopt the same taboos to bring up their own children. Sex offences and deviations are regarded as social definitions and not natural. Most people consider prostitution an immoral behaviour and an act that is not acceptable but to those who are involved it has its own definition (form of employment). The media have continuously propagated the exploitation of the differences in gender to advertise or sell it products. They portray sex as an asset to be sued to make a profit.

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