The impact of cultural expectations on sexual culture

The Impact of Cultural Expectations on Sexual Culture

Culture plays a major role in shaping our understanding of the world, including our attitudes and beliefs about sex. Cultural expectations are often passed down through generations and have a powerful influence on how people view relationships, gender roles, and sexuality. This can have a substantial impact on the development of a sexual culture in particular societies.

Rigid Gender Roles

Cultural expectations often lead to the formation of rigid gender roles within a given community. Women and men are viewed as occupying distinct and separate roles in sexual relationships, with men typically expected to take on a more dominant role. These traditional gender roles can result in a diminished sense of power for those on the receiving end, leading to an increased risk of harm and coercive behaviour.

Repression of Sexuality

Cultural norms can also lead to a repression of sexuality. This is especially true in many religious and conservative communities, where talking openly about sex is seen as inappropriate or even sinful. This can lead to a lack of knowledge and education on sexual health, creating an environment that leaves individuals vulnerable to exploitation.

Expectations of Monogamy

Cultural expectations often place a great emphasis on monogamy and fidelity within relationships. While there is nothing inherently wrong with monogamous relationships, the expectation that people must remain faithful to one person can lead to an overall negative attitude towards alternative sexual relationships such as polyamory or open relationships.


Cultural expectations have a significant impact on the development of sexual culture. Rigid gender roles, repression of sexuality, and an emphasis on monogamy can all lead to an environment that is hostile to sexual diversity. It is therefore important to be aware of our own cultural biases and make an effort to be more open-minded towards different types of relationships.

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