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Bisexuality: the differences between men and women in sexual behavior

Bisexuality: the differences between men and women in sexual behavior

A recent study aimed to explore what bisexual behaviors women and men consider to have “had sex”, who they have implemented them with and the differences in sexual attitudes and bisexual sex stories across generational cohorts.

Over the past three decades, research into the relationship between identity and health of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people has increased significantly (Institute of Medicine [IOM], 2011). Although this research has highlighted a number of health disparities experienced by LGBT people, few studies have explicitly focused on the health of bisexual people (Human Rights Campaign [HRC], 2015).

Often the data of bisexual men and women have been combined with that of lesbian gay men and women, focusing mainly on sexual behavior (e.g. having sex with women and / or men), rather than on identity and experience (Bostwick , 2012; Pathela, Blank, Sell, & Schillinger, 2006; Pathela, Hajat, Schillinger, Sell, & Mostashari, 2006;). However, the persons identified bisexually constitute a distinct and separate group from lesbian, gay and heterosexual women and men (Bostwick, 2012; Galupo, 2011). A recent study aimed to explore what bisexual behaviors women and men consider to have “had sex” and which of these behaviors they have assumed only with women, only with men, women and men, or with none. Moreover,

Participants were selected from a very large database (N = 14.724) which included a spectrum of sexual orientations. The inclusion criteria for the analyzes included the minimum age of 18, living in the United States, self-identification as bisexual and identification as a man. They filled out an online questionnaire, the Kinsey Institute 2007 Had Sex Survey, which was intended to explore the genre [eg, “Which of the following features best describes you? -Woman (born female), – Man (born male), – Transgender / transgender woman (MTF), – Transgender / transgender man (FTM); – Intersex woman; – intersex man; – intersex man; – I choose not to respond “], sexual orientation, attitudes about what behaviors make up having “had sex”, going to provide a personal definition of such an act (eg, “Would you say you ‘had sex’ with someone if the most intimate behavior you had was … ? “Followed by a list of behaviors that can be answered” No “,” Yes “and” I choose not to respond “), lifelong behavior patterns [eg,” Have you ever had any of the following behaviors with a man (men) or a woman (women) “?] and some demographics. For the bisexual women and men of this sample there was no universal agreement on what behaviors constitute the act. However, as would be expected, some behaviors are more likely to be labeled “sex” than others. “Would you say you ‘had sex’ with someone if the most intimate behavior you had was …?” followed by a list of behaviors that can be answered “No”, “Yes” and “I choose not to respond”), lifelong behavior patterns [eg, “Have you ever had any of the following behaviors with a man?” (men) or a woman (women) “?] and some demographics. For the bisexual women and men of this sample there was no universal agreement on what behaviors constitute the act. However, as would be expected, some behaviors are more likely to be labeled “sex” than others. “Would you say you ‘had sex’ with someone if the most intimate behavior you had was …?” followed by a list of behaviors that can be answered “No”, “Yes” and “I choose not to respond”), lifelong behavior patterns [eg, “Have you ever had any of the following behaviors with a man?” (men) or a woman (women) “?] and some demographics. For the bisexual women and men of this sample there was no universal agreement on what behaviors constitute the act. However, as would be expected, some behaviors are more likely to be labeled “sex” than others. lifelong behavior patterns [eg, “Have you ever had any of the following behaviors with a man (men) or woman (women)”?] and some demographics. For the bisexual women and men of this sample there was no universal agreement on what behaviors constitute the act. However, as would be expected, some behaviors are more likely to be labeled “sex” than others. lifelong behavior patterns [eg, “Have you ever had any of the following behaviors with a man (men) or woman (women)”?] and some demographics. For the bisexual women and men of this sample there was no universal agreement on what behaviors constitute the act. However, as would be expected, some behaviors are more likely to be labeled “sex” than others.

The results showed that relatively few, but proportionally more bisexual men than bisexual women, consider passionate kissing and manual or oral stimulation of the breast as “sex”. A greater number of participants considered manual and oral stimulation of the genitals and anus as “sex”, as well as the use of sex toys. The relationship between age and the likelihood of considering using sex toys as “having sex” was statistically significant for both sexes, as older men and women are generally more likely to consider using of sex toys as sex compared to younger groups. Regardless of gender and age, most, but not all participants (88% – 100%), they considered penilo-vaginal (PVI) and penilo-anal (PAI-receptive; and PAI-insertive men) relationships as “sexual intercourse”. Specifically, women were significantly more likely than men to count PVI and PAI – receptive as sex.

The results also reveal that for bisexual men, the most commonly reported sexual behaviors with partners of both sexes were manual and oral genital behaviors (“80%), deep kissing and manual breast stimulation (70%) and oral breast stimulation (60%). About a third reported having had insertive anal intercourse with men and women and another quarter reported having only had male intercourse. Age was significantly associated with having adopted all behaviors except the deep kiss, although the precise nature of the relationship varied. Compared to older age groups, fewer bisexual men in the 18-29 age group engaged in all behaviors except deep kisses. In other words,

For bisexual women, the most commonly reported sexual behaviors with partners of both sexes were deep kissing (almost 90%), manual and oral stimulation of the breasts and manual stimulation of the genitals (“80%) and oral stimulation ( “70%). PVI and PAI with men only were reported by 84% and 64% respectively. About a quarter reported only with male partners. Age was significantly associated with having adopted all behaviors except kissing, with older cohorts having more experience. However, the strength of associations of behavioral stories with age were generally weaker than those of men. In summary, compared to older bisexual men and women, younger age groups (18-29 years) reported less sexual experience and were less likely to count a number of behaviors such as sex; and the correlations with age were stronger for men than for women on a number of items. However, this model is not limited to this bisexual sample (Sanders et al., 2010).

These results have important methodological implications for studies based on questionnaires and population estimates of sexual behavior and identity and have clinical ramifications for interviewing clients or patients.