The Gender Role Motivation Model of Women's Sexually Submissive Behavior and Satisfaction in Heterosexual Couples

Diana T. Sanchez, Julie E. Phelan, Corinne A. Moss-Racusin, Jessica J. Good

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations

Abstract

Previous findings suggest that women are more likely than men to take on the submissive role during sexual activities (e.g., waiting for their partner to initiate and orchestrate sexual activities), often to the detriment of their sexual satisfaction. Extending previous research on gender role motivation, the authors recruited 181 heterosexual couples to examine scripted sexual behavior, motivation for such behavior, and relationship outcomes (sexual satisfaction, perceptions of closeness, and relationship satisfaction) for both women and their partners. Using the actor-partner interdependence model, path analyses revealed that women's submissive behavior had negative links to personal sexual satisfaction and their partner's sexual satisfaction but only when their submission was inconsistent with their sexual preferences. Moreover, the authors show there are negative downstream consequences of diminished sexual satisfaction on perceptions of closeness and overall relationship satisfaction for both partners in the relationship.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)528-539
Number of pages12
JournalPersonality and social psychology bulletin
Volume38
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology

Keywords

  • gender differences
  • gender roles
  • sexual assertiveness
  • sexual desire
  • sexual satisfaction

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