Science Says The Hook-up Culture Isn't Actually Hurting Your Psyche At All
Casual sex is not everybody’s cup of tea. Some will say those who indulge in it are overcompensating for low self-esteem and others would consider it a fun alternative to Netflix on a Friday night.
The majority of psychologists, otherwise known as prudes, will agree that casual sex couldn’t possibly hold as much enjoyment as romantic sex, and instead wreaks regret, unreciprocated emotional attachment and social stigma.
Furthermore, only males could benefit from this form of encounter, as women need a deeper connection to achieve an orgasm.
Professor Zhana Vrangalova is set to alter those perceptions with findings from her new study conducted at NYU, which dismisses the idea that hookups will leave you with nothing but depression.
The research, published in Social Psychology and Personality Science, included 371 male and female NYU students who completed a self-assessment with regards to their thoughts about casual sex.
They were scored by their answers on a scale of restrictiveness, which described an individual's level of openness to a range of sexual encounters.
Then, over a 12-week period, the participants kept a weekly diary detailing all sexual encounters and the influence they had on their overall well-being.
The results of the study showed that those who were least restrictive on the initial sociosexual orientation scale had higher levels of self-esteem and lower rates of depression when involved in casual sex, compared to when they were not. Casual sex actually had a positive influence on those men and women. Yay!
This study also demonstrated that there were few overall differences between genders. Several past reports have established that women are less likely than men to orgasm during casual sex and reinforced the myth that women require romance and rose petals to get off.
Professor Vrangalova proposes that effects are less related with gender and more concerned with motivation for, attitudes toward and past experience with casual sex.
So basically, although casual sex isn’t for everybody, it is healthy for some. You can determine this from your level of sociosexual orientation, which consists of both genetic and cultural factors that have an impact on your feelings toward casual hookups.
The motivation behind wanting to be involved in casual sex is also significant. If your motivation for doing it is for autonomous reasons, such as for fun or to learn about your sexuality, then you are most likely able to handle the ramifications.
Whereas, if you are hooking up for non-autonomous reasons, such as to feel better about yourself or doing it for revenge, then you are most likely to end up in regret.
This all seems pretty obvious: If you like casual sex do it; if not, don’t do it. Yet, these findings seem to be groundbreaking for some psychologists. Arguably, casual sex is not a simple concept to study as it has been confined to a narrow-minded pseudoscience with an undeniable hint of sexism.
This is evident from the past studies that have been incapable of taking into consideration dispositions of the participants, alternatively behaving as though casual sex will have a one-size-fits-all beneficial or harmful impact on everyone.
This study is by no means watertight and is troubled by some limitations, starting with its undersized, college-student-only sample, so the conclusions are not generalizable.
Despite this, the method used to analyze casual sex is logical, and it is likely that the fundamental, obvious point here turns out to be true. If you’re the type of person who genuinely enjoys casual sex, then having casual sex will probably benefit you.
It's all about personal preference. So basically, mind your own sexy business and let other people mind theirs.
Photo Courtesy: Tumblr