SEXUAL VALUE SYSTEMS
Your sexual value system is your personal beliefs, attitudes or feelings about sex and sexuality. (For example, are you conservatively or liberally minded when dealing with sexual situations?) Everyone has a different SVS.
Attitudes about sex and sexuality, past and present:
|shameful||depraved||work of the devil||temptation|
|unlawful||scary (consequences)||a duty||monotonous|
|not supposed to be pleasurable (for females)||acceptable only within marriage|
|acceptable only for reproduction/procreation||more acceptable for men than women|
2. Words suggesting that sex is essentially GOOD (celebrated):
|fun||exciting||to be celebrated||natural|
|a natural part of life||beautiful||intimate||relaxing|
|equally acceptable for men and women|
Other things that Sexual Value Systems may depend on:
- Historical time?
- Historical place?
- Particular society?
- Social status?
- Male vs. female?
Related question: are there still different rules/standards for men and women?
Think if the terms used if you have multiple partners: Stud versus Slut.
Rules for when sexual behavior is acceptable:
You sexual value system also tells you when sex is OK. Different sexual value systems might consider that sex is OK only if you are:
committed (could refer to exclusivity
or to duration)
|protected (safe sex)||have known partner for a while|
|intending to produce children||not lying|
|not "using" the other person||not feeling "used" by the other person|
|trusting of others||comfortable - anytime, anyplace, anywhere|
|a consenting adult||not using force|
|thought things through||responsible|
|law abiding sex (not deviant or illegal)||in a consensual relationship|
What kind of sex? Finally, when we ask “under what conditions is it OK to have sex,” we have to define what we mean by “sex.” The rules may differ for different activities. Ask yourself what the rules are for:
|fornication||adultery||oral sex||anal sex|
Further thinking about your own SVS:
- What is my SVS? How would I answer the questions above?
- Where did my own SVS come from?
- Has it changed?
- How has it changed (if it has)?
POSSIBLE DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:
1. Discuss any of the above material.
2. Has the SVS in the USA changed in the last 40 years? How?
- are the changes good or bad.
- [hopefully you will see both good aspects and bad aspects. Discuss each.]
3. Debate with at least one person taking each position:
- Sex is ok anytime anywhere anyplace and any kind.
- Sex should be kept only for marriage in a lifelong committed monogamous relationship.
4. My SVS:
- What is my SVS? Sex is ok if.....
- Where did it come from?
- has it changed?
- do I expect it will change further as I grow older?
- would I recommend it for my little sister or brother?