In an interesting article published in ‘Revista Cubana de Medicina General Integral’, three expert doctors analyze the evolution of sexuality throughout history and the way myths and realities arise and are still rooted in our society.
Sexuality cannot be understood only from a biological concept because it would be limiting it to its reproductive capacity, when it actually encompasses many areas of the human being such as the social, cultural, emotional, individual, identity and gender aspects.
According to Ignacio González Labrador, master in Sexual Pedagogy, one of the great obstacles for the understanding of sexuality is the influence of past societies regards sex; therefore, for the understanding of the current difficulties around sexuality it is important to review and analyze the historical past.
Women were considered as personal belongings more than 500 years ago, destined to propitiate sexual pleasure and to reproduce, while men had the right to practice sexual relations with several women.
“With the emergence of Judaism, adultery and homosexuality were forbidden, although in ancient Greece there was tolerance for certain forms of homosexuality, but when it came to women they were considered second-class citizens. In Athens, for example, they lacked legal and political rights to the same extent as slaves. They were only considered childbearers,” Gonzalez notes.
In some Eastern cultures (China and India) a more positive position is taken on sexuality, because sex was not an act that inspired terror, nor was it sinful, it was considered an act of worship and veneration.
Gonzalez makes a separate analysis of men and women and the differences in the myths and taboos found according to sex, and even considers that before birth they begin to origin.
Women, from the time they are in their mother’s womb, are assigned the color pink and are expected to be sweet, affectionate, soft and passive. In addition, they are marked from their childhood games and professional career until their love life.
Women are not allowed to manifest their desires, passions and sexual needs. Public spaces are denied to them because they belong to the house. They are prepared from childhood until motherhood and are taught that they must be good mothers, faithful wives, monogamous, loving, sweet, understanding.
According to Emilia Miyar Pieiga, Master in Sexual Pedagogy, the enjoyment of one’s sexuality is not stimulated, sexual behavior is limited; in other words, women are prepared to satisfy and attend to the needs of others.
Among the myths versus realities in female sexuality, according to Cuban experts, are the following:
- Myth: woman equals mother. Reality: she is also a scientist, policewoman, president.
- Myth: female love must be romantic. Reality: it is passionate, sexual, ardent.
- Myth: must have erotic passivity. Reality: must have initiative in relationships.
- Myth: fear to the pain of the first coitus. Reality: there must be trust and communication with her partner.
- Myth: women fake orgasms because they are afraid to express their needs and fear rejection from their partner. Reality: most of the time, women do not achieve sexual pleasure because they have a sexual partner who is inept in coital techniques.
The harmful influence of these myths on women does not allow them to fully enjoy their sexual encounters and, in the long term, it can contribute to the apparition of female sexual dysfunctions, such as inhibited sexual desire, vaginismus, primary or secondary anorgasmia, etc.
Men, likewise, are assigned the color blue from their mother’s womb. They are expected to be independent, aggressive, physically strong, good workers, and sometimes even their childhood games influence their professional lives.
“The male is prepared for the public space; he is required to behave more sexually and with greater enjoyment, thus also favoring the appearance of masculine myths,” says Rosa María González Salvat, another expert on the subject.
“Male love is synonymous with sex and pleasure, because he is taught to enjoy sexuality above all. He must have an erotic aggressiveness, because he has to be the one who takes the initiative, the proposition and do everything in sexual relations. After all of the above, the man must be a father (this in the last place, which differentiates him from women); however, also from the social point of view, the male is expropriated vital masculine spaces”, notes Gonzalez.
Among the myths vs. realities in male sexuality, are:
- Myth: the man is the male provider, unfaithful and a bad father. Reality: he is a father and husband present in his home.
- Myth: men do not cry and do not complain. Fact: not expressing their feelings hurts their physical, mental and sexual health.
- Myth: penis size is related to sexual performance and virility. Fact: scientifically, penis size is not related to sexual performance.
- Myth: making love is synonymous with penetration. Fact: sex is more than penetration, there are many ways to eroticize a relationship.
- Myth: the man should always take the initiative in sexual relations. Reality: women should also have the initiative to express their sexuality.
The negative influence of these myths and taboos only favor the appearance of sexual dysfunctions in men, such as inhibited sexual desire, erectile dysfunctions, premature ejaculation, etc.
Beyond the myths, men and women do not know how their sexuality works, with many questions and little guidance, and that is how as adults they are unable to practice oral sex because they consider it dirty, when in fact it is a sublime and magical expression of human sexuality.