I am constantly confronted with information that tries to tell me we are living in a more conservative culture. And when I find data that goes against this I want to scream it from the rooftops. (Or at least blog about it).
When it comes to studying the subject of sex (something I know a little about) there is a common concern that asking people questions about sex and their own sex lives is too personal and is likely to make them feel distressed and uncomfortable. When I gathered data for my basic research project for my Doctorate, the most common concern was where will this end up and would participants be able to be identified. There was never a concern about whether my question were going to cause distress and I never been given any feedback that they did.
But it seems a common thought that merely asking someone about their sex life could be harmful. It is a private subject for many and I do believe there is a time and a place for these conversations and questions. But it’s good to now know that this line of research in general not causing harm.
A study was conducted of 504 college students where the survey items they completed were deliberately chosen because they were thought to have the highest potential to cause distress. But the results indicated that completing the sex survey did not increase reports of negative emotions among participant. Participants even rated the survey as being less stressful than many normal everyday stressors that people occasionally experience. For eg, getting a paper cut, waiting in line or spilling your coffee.
So if answering a questionnaire about delicate sexual topics is less distressful than waiting in line, surely one could imply that seeing this content in various media avenues would not be harmful either or at least not as harmful as we think. It might just even do us some good. (For the record I’m not talking about porn but educational and useful information).
I know this is only a survey but start to think of it this way. Just maybe talking about sex is not as harmful as we think. I’m not asking you to show it, or even do it,( that’s up to you) but I am asking you to talk about, at least with the one you are having it or supposed to be having it with!