Women, Sex and Dating: A Qualitative Study of College Men's Perceptions

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Counseling Psychology & Community Services


A two-hour focus group of ten, 19, 20, and 21-year-old male college studnets who expressed an interest in dataing women was undertaken to gain a deeper understanding of men's perceptions of women, sex, and dating. Data analysis of verbatim transripts was conducted by three female qualitative researchers. Findings suggest that young men experience confusion, frustration, and lack of trust of young women, at the same time that they experience pressure to be sexually active, perceive women as potential status enhancers and objects, and fear contracting sexually transmitted diseases and impregnating young women. Reported readiness for intimate relationships varied within the group, with some participants reporting that "the grass is always greener", and that the "thrill of the chase" is often quickly followed by boredom in relationships, while others reported a desire for more intimacy and connection in their relationships. Findings are discussed in the context of masculinity, sex role identity, sexuality, and intimacy.

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