Title: Identifying Womens Sexual Agency in their Reports of First Sexual Encounters: A Qualitative Study
1 Identifying Womens Sexual Agency in their Reports of First Sexual Encounters A Qualitative Study
Rachel Pittard and Rachel Robertson
2 Sexual Agency
Little research on the relatively new concept of sexual agency
We hope to elaborate and expand on previous research examining the construct
Sexual agency defined
the possession of control over ones body and sexual choices (Phillips 2000)
the ability to act according to ones will in a sexual realm (Crown Roberts 2007)
3 Why is Sexual Agency Important
Our results may help improve sex
education programs and therapies by
Encouraging womens sexual health well-being and satisfaction
Empowering women to be confident and in control during sexual encounters
4 Positive Psychology
Advocates for the study of normative subjective experience (Seligman Steen Parks 2005)
Addresses positive impacts that sex can have on those who are experiencing it
Examines what goes right in sexual situations
Equality among genders
Sexism in culture leads to power inequities in the bedroom (Strong Yarber Sayad DeVault 2008)
Sexual scripts influence women to be sexually passive
Women often experience sex as something they went along with (Dunn 1998)
Traditional femininity constitutes an unsafe sexual identity andconventionally feminine behavior is putting young women at risk (Holland Ramazanoglu Sharpe Thomson 2000)
6 Research Question
How do women portray themselves as agents in their reflections on their first sexual encounter
7 Online Survey Design
Recruited by email
Study description page
Informed consent signed electronically
Four open-ended survey questions
8 Participants (N 21)
Small mid-western College
Women 18-25 years (M 20.1 yrs.)
Definition of first sexual encounter
Participants told However you define it
Additional guideline May have involved genital contact loss of virginity or other sexually intimate acts (beyond just kissing or non-intimate touching)
Heterosexual homosexual and bisexual
Elicited in-depth narratives regarding their emotional experiences of the first sexual encounter
Not looking for details but feelings about the experience
Four questions each building upon the other
10 Initial Question
Immediately following your first sexual encounter what were your initial thoughts and feelings about or reactions to the experience
11 Follow-up Questions
2. Looking back on that experience what are your current thoughts and feelings about your first sexual encounter
3. How do you currently evaluate your choice to engage in your first sexual encounter
4. Do you have any additional thoughts and feelings about that experience now Is there anything else about your reactions that we have not asked about which you feel is important
12 1st Coding Scheme Agency Dimensions
13 1st Coding Scheme Agency
CONNECTION attachment or bond with the experience
Joni I felt intrigued and somewhat mesmerized by the whole experience.
DISCONNECTION disengagement from the experience
Judy It was a very uncomfortable and forced experience.
14 1st Coding Scheme Agency
INTERACTION reciprocal action and equality between the sexual partners
Marie It made me feel close to the person as though we had some type of connection between the two of us.
ISOLATION feeling separated from the sexual partner
Cathy I felt bad guilty. My boyfriend said we should not have done it. He wanted to try it in the first place. I was very confused.
15 1st Coding Scheme Agency
ACTIVITY making and asserting decisions and participating by ones own will
Carly I only had sexual experiences that I was OK with.
PASSIVITY being submissive and receiving others actions
Brandy It was something I went along with.
16 2nd Coding Scheme Affective Content
Positive Affect favorable feelings about
the experience and/or self
Katie It was ultimately a comfortable happy experience with a loving partner.
Deb It was my own decision and if I were to do it again it would have probably happened in much the same way.
17 2nd Coding Scheme Affective Content
Negative Affect unfavorable feelings
about the experience and/or self
Jenna Horror shame disappointment fear. I have come to accept it as just a mistake .
Cathy I cannot get over the idea that I am a bad person when I do that stuff.
18 Interpretive Analysis
Patterns of how agency is portrayed
Variations of sexual agency described within the three dimensions
Patterns of affective content were compared to agency portrayals on the three dimensions
19 Fully Agentic
Connection interaction and activity
No nonagentic codes
Described encounters positively
Katie I dont regret it and I wouldnt change anything about it. Im happy with the choice I made knowing it was with the right person and at the right time.
20 Partially Agentic
Less than 3 agentic codes
3 or less agentic codes and 1 or more nonagentic codes
Ambivalence described encounters both positively and negatively
Cathy I thought I was ready but looking back I wish I had been more emotionally mature. I am still getting over the guilt but it has made me a stronger person.
21 Fully Nonagentic
Disconnection isolation and passivity
No agentic codes
Described encounters negatively
Jenna In my particular instance I was very disappointed and horrified by my own lack of self-control. My biggest fears following the encounter were that sex would always be like that and that my friends would find out about it (they still havent).
22 Sexual Agency Research
Benefits of elaborating the concept of sexual agency
Improve sex education programs
Empower women to be active sexual agents
PowerShow.com is a leading presentation/slideshow sharing website. Whether your application is business, how-to, education, medicine, school, church, sales, marketing, online training or just for fun, PowerShow.com is a great resource. And, best of all, most of its cool features are free and easy to use.
You can use PowerShow.com to find and download example online PowerPoint ppt presentations on just about any topic you can imagine so you can learn how to improve your own slides and presentations for free. Or use it to find and download high-quality how-to PowerPoint ppt presentations with illustrated or animated slides that will teach you how to do something new, also for free. Or use it to upload your own PowerPoint slides so you can share them with your teachers, class, students, bosses, employees, customers, potential investors or the world. Or use it to create really cool photo slideshows - with 2D and 3D transitions, animation, and your choice of music - that you can share with your Facebook friends or Google+ circles. That's all free as well!
For a small fee you can get the industry's best online privacy or publicly promote your presentations and slide shows with top rankings. But aside from that it's free. We'll even convert your presentations and slide shows into the universal Flash format with all their original multimedia glory, including animation, 2D and 3D transition effects, embedded music or other audio, or even video embedded in slides. All for free. Most of the presentations and slideshows on PowerShow.com are free to view, many are even free to download. (You can choose whether to allow people to download your original PowerPoint presentations and photo slideshows for a fee or free or not at all.) Check out PowerShow.com today - for FREE. There is truly something for everyone!