Essay Women Redefining Sexual Identity in Middle Adulthood

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The Impact of Women Redefining Sexual Identity in Middle Adulthood      It is becoming an increasing phenomenon that women are coming out as lesbians in their middle-adulthood. While defining one’s sexual identity is often a confusing time for youth it becomes that much more difficult for women as they get older. As women age they are more likely to get married, have children, begin careers, and settle into a lifestyle that is dictated to them by patriarchal rules.       The further they become saturated with the male dominated life, the harder it is for women to become open to their own identity formation and needs. It is instilled in women from an early age that it is expected that…show more content…
45).       Because the coming out process is often a lengthy process, the identity formation stage is prolonged from adolescence and young adulthood. Sexual identity occurs through dynamics of social interaction and can change at any stage of the life cycle. Since most social interaction occurs following a male to female model, engaging in a                     p. 3 first sexual experience or even recognizing an interest in the opposite sex may take a number of years (Richardson & Hurt 1981 as cited in Rust, p. 50). This is in fact true, if you think about it. Little girls are bought dolls and tea sets and easy bake ovens so that they can imitate their mothers’ behavior. Little girls learn to cook and clean and are told early on that one day they will marry a handsome man and have lots of babies. We are taught gender specific roles from the day we are born.      Women don’t usually have same sex experiences until they are twenty- three or twenty- four and women are pushed to marry by the time they are twenty or twenty-one. If a woman marries at that age it decreases the chance of completion of identifying sexually as a lesbian (Swan, 1997).      It is ingrained in our heads

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