Is casual sex worth it. Is Casual Sex Worth It?.



Is casual sex worth it

Is casual sex worth it

Although most young people have at least one hookup under their belts, many fear this is detrimental to their psychological well-being. Scholars, health professionals, and the media alike have all expressed concerns that hooking up leads to depression , anxiety, or low self-esteem. Many studies over the past decade have tried to answer this question, but the results have been very mixed.

Studies of casual sex and well-being usually go like this: There are now about 20 such studies and the results are all over the place. Sometimes the hookup group has higher depression or lower self-esteem than the no-hookup group particularly among women , other times the hookup group has lower depression and higher self-esteem particularly among men , and very often there are no differences between the two groups.

It is likely that not all hookups have the same potential to harm or benefit well-being and not all people engaging in them are equally susceptible to that harmful or beneficial potential. Instead, there are individual, interpersonal, and social factors that this relationship depends on.

Motivation is a powerful thing. What are right and wrong reasons? Right, or autonomous, reasons are self-directed and reflective of our values. Wrong, or nonautonomous, reasons are about seeking rewards and avoiding punishments whether internal or external or complete lack of motivation. Here are some examples of autonomous and nonautonomous motives for casual sex.

Wanting the fun and enjoyment. Wanting to explore and learn about your sexuality. Believing it is an important experience to have. Wanting to feel better about yourself or to avoid other unpleasant feelings. Wanting to please someone else e.

Wanting to get a favor, material reward, or revenge. Hoping it would lead to a long-term relationship. Not actually wanting to hook up, but being somehow tricked or coerced into it, or too intoxicated to make a responsible decision. Decades of research have demonstrated that the motivation—well-being link holds true for pretty much any human behavior, from studying, to exercising, to helping. So I set out to examine this in a sample of undergraduates surveyed twice during the academic year.

Author After statistically controlling for demographics, personality traits, prior casual and romantic sex, and well-being at the beginning of the academic year, I found that whether or not students hooked up during the course of the year was not related to their well-being at the end of the year. However, whether they did it for nonautonomous motives was.

Surprisingly, autonomous motivation was unrelated to well-being. Men and women were remarkably similar in the extent to which they hooked up for autonomous and nonautonomous reasons, and in the way their hookup motivations were related to well-being.

So next time you have a chance to have casual sex, think about why you're doing it. If it feels like you're doing it for the wrong reasons, stop. Your mental health may depend on it. A longitudinal investigation of the role of motivation. Archives of Sexual Behavior. That's what The Casual Sex Project is for. Follow me on Twitter DrZhana for daily updates on the latest in sex research, check out my website for more information about me, or sign up for my monthly newsletter to stay up up to date with all my sex research- and sex education - related activities.

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The unsexy truth, the hookup culture



Is casual sex worth it

Although most young people have at least one hookup under their belts, many fear this is detrimental to their psychological well-being. Scholars, health professionals, and the media alike have all expressed concerns that hooking up leads to depression , anxiety, or low self-esteem. Many studies over the past decade have tried to answer this question, but the results have been very mixed.

Studies of casual sex and well-being usually go like this: There are now about 20 such studies and the results are all over the place. Sometimes the hookup group has higher depression or lower self-esteem than the no-hookup group particularly among women , other times the hookup group has lower depression and higher self-esteem particularly among men , and very often there are no differences between the two groups.

It is likely that not all hookups have the same potential to harm or benefit well-being and not all people engaging in them are equally susceptible to that harmful or beneficial potential. Instead, there are individual, interpersonal, and social factors that this relationship depends on. Motivation is a powerful thing. What are right and wrong reasons? Right, or autonomous, reasons are self-directed and reflective of our values. Wrong, or nonautonomous, reasons are about seeking rewards and avoiding punishments whether internal or external or complete lack of motivation.

Here are some examples of autonomous and nonautonomous motives for casual sex. Wanting the fun and enjoyment. Wanting to explore and learn about your sexuality. Believing it is an important experience to have. Wanting to feel better about yourself or to avoid other unpleasant feelings. Wanting to please someone else e.

Wanting to get a favor, material reward, or revenge. Hoping it would lead to a long-term relationship. Not actually wanting to hook up, but being somehow tricked or coerced into it, or too intoxicated to make a responsible decision. Decades of research have demonstrated that the motivation—well-being link holds true for pretty much any human behavior, from studying, to exercising, to helping.

So I set out to examine this in a sample of undergraduates surveyed twice during the academic year. Author After statistically controlling for demographics, personality traits, prior casual and romantic sex, and well-being at the beginning of the academic year, I found that whether or not students hooked up during the course of the year was not related to their well-being at the end of the year.

However, whether they did it for nonautonomous motives was. Surprisingly, autonomous motivation was unrelated to well-being. Men and women were remarkably similar in the extent to which they hooked up for autonomous and nonautonomous reasons, and in the way their hookup motivations were related to well-being.

So next time you have a chance to have casual sex, think about why you're doing it. If it feels like you're doing it for the wrong reasons, stop. Your mental health may depend on it. A longitudinal investigation of the role of motivation. Archives of Sexual Behavior. That's what The Casual Sex Project is for. Follow me on Twitter DrZhana for daily updates on the latest in sex research, check out my website for more information about me, or sign up for my monthly newsletter to stay up up to date with all my sex research- and sex education - related activities.

Is casual sex worth it

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1 Comments

  1. The bottom line is that casual sex may not be for everyone. We cannot hate something that does not exist.

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