Does being consistent with gender norms lead to a happy sex life?

Quite the opposite:

People often believe that they must be consistent with gender norms to obtain others’ approval. The authors believe people who invest in gender norms tend to base self-esteem on others’ approval, which undermines their sexual autonomy and ultimately diminishes their sexual satisfaction in intimate relationships. A survey of 309 sexually active college students examined whether placing importance on conforming to gender norms undermines sexual relationships because of its link to basing self-worth on others’ approval and decreased sexual autonomy. Using structural equation modeling, the authors found that valuing gender conformity (but not avoiding gender deviance) negatively affects sexual pleasure for both men and women through increased contingency on others’ approval and restricted sexual autonomy. The model fit the data for both men and women.

Source: “Doing Gender in the Bedroom: Investing in Gender Norms and the Sexual Experience” from Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin

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