The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality (CJHS)

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Volume 18, Number 1-2, 2009

The components of optimal sexuality: A portrait of “great sex”
Peggy J. Kleinplatz¹,², A. Dana Ménard², Marie-Pierre Paquet², Nicolas Paradis³, Meghan Campbell4;, Dino Zuccarino², and Lisa Mehak²

¹Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa ON
²School of Psychology, University of Ottawa, Ottawa ON
³Faculty of Education, University of Ottawa, Ottawa ON
4Independent practice, Ottawa ON

Abstract: The purpose of this investigation was to develop a useful conceptual model of optimal sexuality by identifying and describing its elements. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 64 key informants, i.e., 44 individuals who reported having experienced “great sex” and 20 sex therapists. Subsequently, phenomenologically-oriented content analysis was performed on interview transcripts. Eight major components were identified: being present, connection, deep sexual and erotic intimacy, extraordinary communication, interpersonal risk-taking and exploration, authenticity, vulnerability and transcendence. Clinical implications of these findings are considered, including the need for sex therapists to acquire and transmit new methods and skills (The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 2009; 18: 1-13).


Interpersonal perceptions of desired frequency of sexual behaviours
Deanne C. Simms¹ and E. Sandra Byers¹

¹Department of Psychology, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, NB

Abstract: This study explored gender differences in interpersonal perceptions of desired frequency of sexual behaviours and their association with the sexual satisfaction of dating couples. Both partners from 92 heterosexual couples reported how frequently they had engaged in a range of sexual behaviours and how frequently they would ideally have done so. Participants also reported their perceptions of their partners’ ideal sexual frequency for different behaviours. The results showed that the men’s ideal frequency for engaging in sexual behaviours was greater and the women’s, both partners perceived each other’s ideal frequencies to be more dissimilar than they actually were, and the women perceived greater dissimilarity between their own and their partner’s ideal frequencies than did the men. The women overestimated their partner’s ideal sexual frequency for different behaviours whereas the men were accurate in their understanding of their partner’s in this regard. Canonical correlation analysis revealed that the more frequently partners engaged in sexual activities and the more similar men perceived their own and their partner’s ideal sexual frequency to be, the higher the sexual satisfaction of both partners. We consider the role of stereotypes, the content of perceptions, and the effects of relationship type in interpreting these results (The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 2009; 18: 15-26).


Non-use of condoms at last intercourse among Canadian youth: Influence of sexual partners and social expectations
Owen Gallupe¹, William F. Boyce², and Stevenson Fergus³

¹ Centre for Studies in Primary Care, Queen’s University, Kingston ON, Canada
² Social Program Evaluation Group, Queen’s University, Kingston ON, Canada
³ School of Kinesiology and Health Studies, Queen’s University, Kingston ON, Canada

Abstract: This study examined associations between condom non-use at last intercourse, partner influences, and social expectations in a large sample of Grade 9 and 11 students using data drawn from the Canadian Youth, Sexual Health and HIV/AIDS Study. Partner influences included having been pressured to have sex when they did not want to and willingness to have sex with a partner who did not want to use a condom. Social expectations included opinions regarding having sex without love, opinions about having casual sex, and communication with partners about condom use. Results indicated that some partner influences and social expectations were significantly associated with the condom non-use. Specifically, willingness to have sex with a partner who did not want to use a condom and lower levels of condom communication were both associated with condom non-use at last intercourse by both sexes. A key finding was that having experienced pressure to have sex was associated with condom non-use only among girls. The findings suggest that youth are likely to benefit from programs that stress sexual equality and respect and that promote condom use negotiation skills (The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 2009; 18: 27-34).


The interrelationships between sexual self-esteem, sexual assertiveness and sexual satisfaction
A. Dana Ménard¹ and Alia Offman²

¹ School of Psychology, University of Ottawa, Ottawa ON
² Psychology Department, Carleton University, Ottawa ON

Abstract: This study investigated the relationships between sexual self-esteem, sexual assertiveness and sexual satisfaction. It was hypothesized that higher levels of sexual self-esteem would be associated with greater sexual satisfaction and that sexual assertiveness would act as a partial mediator. The participants were 25 men and 46 women, aged 19-56 years, recruited from the community. Participants completed questionnaires measuring sexual self-esteem, sexual assertiveness and sexual satisfaction. The results showed strong correlations between all three variables and confirmed sexual assertiveness as a partial mediator of the relationship between sexual self-esteem and sexual satisfaction. The implications of the findings for clinical practice are considered (The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 2009; 18: 35-45).


Sexual health education in the schools: Questions & answers (3rd edition)
Sex Information and Education Council of Canada (SIECCAN)
Toronto, ON

Abstract: Access to effective, broadly-based sexual health education is an important contributing factor to the health and well-being of Canadian youth. This resource document provides research-based answers to 16 common questions that parents, communities, educators, health and school administrators, and governments may have about sexual health education in the schools. These questions and answers focus on issues that include the current status of adolescent sexual health, parents’ and students’ opinions regarding sexual health education, the impact of sexual health education on behaviour, the key ingredients of effective programs, the appropriateness of “abstinence-only” approaches, and the social and economic benefits of providing sexual health education. This document supports sexual health education in the schools that is grounded in democratic principles, informed by credible research, and consistent with the Public Health Agency of Canada’s (2008) Canadian Guidelines for Sexual Health Education (The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 2009; 18: 47-60).


Canada’s sex offender registries: Background, implementation, and social policy considerations
Lisa Murphy¹, J. Paul Fedoroff², and Melissa Martineau³

¹University of Ottawa, Institute of Mental Health Research, Ottawa, ON
²Forensic Research, University of Ottawa, Institute of Mental Health Research, Ottawa, ON
³Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Behavioural Sciences Branch, Research & Development, Ottawa, ON

Abstract: Canada currently has two sex offender registries (SORs): The Ontario Sex Offender Registry (OSOR) established in 2001 and the National Sex Offender Registry (NSOR) established in 2004. Both SOR databases contain information (e.g., photo, age, address, type of offence, and victim characteristics) of individuals convicted of sex offences (e.g., sexual assault, sexual interference, computer child luring, child pornography). Placement on an SOR in Canada lasts from 10 years to life. This article reviews the background and development of the OSOR and NSOR in Canada. Current issues such as balancing the privacy rights of sex offenders with the interests of the community, as well as existing research on SORs, are discussed. It is noted that although the U.S. SORs and the two Canadian SORs provide information to law enforcement agencies, Canada does not make this information available to the general public whereas the U.S. does. This difference between the two countries may explain the much higher compliance with SOR orders in Canada compared to the U.S. The authors suggest that additional research is needed to more accurately access the effectiveness of the Canadian SORs (The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 2009; 18: 61-72).

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