We all know what sex is.
But sex is only a small part of who we are as sexual beings. Even people who are not having sex are sexual beings. And so there’s another word that you should know and use too. That word is sexuality. Here are some of the things that are included when we talk about sexuality:
Do you really know what sex is?
Do you think your child has the same definition?
Do you think your definition is the same as ours?
People tend to use the word “sex” very differently or arbitrarily – what sex is or means to one person can be radically different than what it is or means to someone else.
Click here to find out our definition for sex. You may be surprised!
1. Sexuality is much more than body parts and sex (though it includes these things, too).
2. Sexuality includes our gender identity (the core sense that we are female or male).
3. Sexuality includes gender role (the idea of how we should behave because we are a female or male).
4. Sexuality includes our sexual orientation (heterosexual, homosexual, or bisexual).
5. Sexuality includes how we feel about our bodies. We call that “body image,” and poor body image can have a profound effect on our ability to have healthy relationships. A person with poor body image may not think they deserve a good partner, and so they may be willing to settle for someone who will not respect them or who may even abuse them.
6. Sexuality includes our sexual experiences, thoughts, ideas, and fantasies.
7. Sexuality includes the way in which the media, family, friends, religion, age, life goals, and our self-esteem shape our sexual selves.
8. Sexuality includes how we experience intimacy, touch, love, compassion, joy, and sorrow.
9. We like this quote: “Sexuality is expressed in the way we speak, smile, stand, sit, dress, dance, laugh, and cry.”
Why do people’s sexualities differ?
Many theories have been put forward citing genetic pre-determination, childhood influences, and peer-pressure amongst other reasons. However, attempts to find a single cause for an individual’s sexuality and sexual orientation or to influence or change an individual’s sexuality have not been successful. Like many of our other characteristics, sexuality seems to be largely a chance product of one’s unique nature, which is then further developed by our early interactions. Our sexuality seems to be formed by the time we reach our teens—although it may be many years later before we come to understand and accept our sexuality, which seems resistant to attempts to radically alter it.
Sex and sexuality
Sexuality is not just about SEX, although people often define sexuality in terms of genitals, what we do with them, and who we do it with.
Sexuality involves and is shaped by many things, including:
values and beliefs