Women are more likely than men to identify themselves as being bisexual. A new study has found that members of the fairer sex are more flexible in their sexuality and that their orientation may depend on the opportunities that they have.
A team of researchers from the University of Notre Dame inform that female subjects who were rated as being more attractive, were much more likely to identify themselves as being completely straight. However, female subjects who were rated as being less attractive, were much more likely to identify themselves as being bisexual.
The working theory is that the more attractive women were completely straight because they had a better chance of attracting good looking members of the opposite sex, however the reverse is not necessarily true for the less attractive women, according to Elizabeth Aura McClintock, study author and sociologist from the University of Notre Dame (North Bend, Indiana).
She gave a statement to Live Science saying that “I do not claim that women become lesbians because they are not attractive enough to get men” and that if we were to embrace that logic, we could also claim that some of the more attractive women never get the chance to become involved with other women “because they are caught up in the pressure of hetero-normativity”.
One possible explanation is that less attractive women feel less pressure to adhere to hetero-normativity.
The findings also confirmed that women are typically more flexible in their sexuality, compared to men. The female subjects in the study were almost three (3) times more likely to change their sexual orientation over the course of the study.
Evolutionary psychologists have informed that more women than men may identify themselves as not being completely straight or completely gay because it simply makes good evolutionary sense.
Historically speaking, women who experienced rape and women who had partners that either died or ran away with another lover, found it a lot easier to raise their children if they paired up with another woman in a similar situation, as opposed to going at it alone.
The study seems to confirm this theory as female subjects who had a baby at a young age (before the age of 22), were less likely to identify themselves as being completely straight, compared to female subjects who had a baby at a later age.
The study also found that women who were more attractive as well as women who were highly educated, were more likely to identify themselves as being completely straight.
As for the men in the study, they’re basically the opposite of women. Those who were highly educated were more likely to identify themselves as being bisexual, while those who had a baby at a young age were more likely to identify themselves as being completely straight.
To reach these conclusions, McClintock and her colleagues looked at data from a sizable, ongoing study which began back in 1994 and has been tracking 14.000 subjects ever since – the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health.
The research team examined data from surveys conducted between the years of 1994 and 1995, when the subjects were 16 years old, then compared these original answers to those given later in life, between the years of 2001 and 2002, and between the years of 2007 and 2008. The last survey the research team examined was conducted when the subjects were 28 years old.
The findings were made public earlier this week, on Tuesday (August 25, 2015), at a meeting held by the American Sociological Association (ASA).
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