Understanding sexual relations between marital partners: A study of Ogu families, south-western Nigeria

Onipede Wusu, Lagos State University
Uche Isiugo-Abanihe, University of Ibadan

The study examines control over sexuality between marital partners. Using a multi-stage sampling procedure, structured questionnaires were administered among 900 married men and women in the study area to generate quantitative data;9 focus group discussions were also organized to elicit contextual information. The analysis reveals that there is pleasure in sex that makes both partners naturally to desire it. While men are culturally conditioned to make direct demand for sex, women employ indirect erotic strategies to initiate sex. The consent of both partners is required for the encounter to give maximum pleasure. Sexual relation between marital partners in the study area is characterized by politics and less of any partner having dominance. Logistic models show that urban residence and frequent spousal communication are like to promote gender equality in the control over sexuality between marital partners. Hence sexual health programmes should focus on both partners and not just men.

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Presented in Session 82: Sexuality in the African context