The Impact of Romantic Comedies on Our Perceptions of Sexuality
Romantic comedies are beloved films enjoyed by audiences worldwide. They transport us to an idealized world where love triumphs over all obstacles. However, behind their entertaining and romantic appeal, these films also have an impact on our perception of sexuality.
The Idealized Portrayal of Sexuality
Romantic comedies often present an idealized image of sexuality. Sex scenes are typically portrayed as gentle, passionate, and perfectly synchronized. The characters always seem to know exactly what their partner wants, and they consistently achieve simultaneous orgasms. This representation creates unrealistic expectations among viewers, especially young people and teenagers, who may feel disappointed or dissatisfied with their own sex lives.
Even Adults Fall for It
While adults may believe they are wiser and can recognize the unrealistic nature of these scenes intellectually, they still emotionally adhere to these scenarios and desire them in their own relationships. It’s no wonder that films like “50 Shades of Grey,” “Outlander,” “Sex Life,” “Bridgerton,” and others have had such an impact on the sexuality of many adults, sometimes even with negative consequences. Sometimes positives…
The Imperatives of Romantic Comedy on Our Sexuality
Can you identify the myths found in romantic comedies and media in general? Which ones impact you?
- Sexual desire should happen spontaneously. (Definitely not true!)
- Undressing is smooth, sexy, and incredibly arousing. (Yeah right! How often have your pants gotten stuck at your hips or the button of a shirt refused to come undone?)
- A single seductive glance instantly lubricates a vagina, and a few kisses later, you effortlessly slide a finger, object, or penis inside to begin penetration, reaching the 7th heaven of ecstasy. (Don’t think so!!!)
- Did you know that it was the media that invented the rule of waiting 3 days after a date to not appear “desperate”?
- Men always want sex, and you just have to offer it. It doesn’t take much to give them an erection. (Something that women in my office, who have more sexual desire than their partners, wouldn’t say about their sexual relationship.)
- Sexual variety means changing positions and changing rooms. (These changes are like watching your romantic comedy while tilting the TV to the side and imagining you’re watching a new film.)
- If we love each other, we should be able to spontaneously and quickly read and understand our partner’s sexual desires in every sexual encounter. (Most likely not…the more you know someone the more you tend to avoid each others insecurities)
- The nice guy always gets the girl in the end. (Yes, being kind and respectful is the foundation of a healthy and satisfying relationship, but it often takes more than that to be considered sexually desirable.)
Do you know of any others?
Why Do We Buy into It?
Naturally, it’s because it makes us dream, and it’s fun. Pornography does the same for sexual fantasies. We always hope for a better world that fulfills our most satisfying aspirations. However, even if we don’t intellectually subscribe to these ideas, there is still a part of us that desires this reality. Sometimes, we no longer distinguish between what is false and true in sexuality. We believe we are beyond these standards that the “young” are too naive to perceive when in reality…adults have just as many blind spots.
Enjoy the Comedies, But…
Romantic comedies have a significant impact on our perception of sexuality. While they can be entertaining and enjoyable to watch, it is important to step back and not take these films as realistic models of sexuality. Seriously! Not just saying, “Yeah, I know,” but still secretly hoping for these things to happen in your own relationship and sexuality. You have to detach yourself from them for real!