Peter H Brown Clinical Psychologist

Psychology News & Resources

Sex: Is that all that men want?…NOPE!

A study from the Kinsey Institute strongly challenges the myth that men value sex more highly than other things. The findings relating to what men value and how they rate their sense of masculinity are robust across age, nationality and erectile function. Diana KirschnerPhD.  has summarised the findings on the Psychology Today site (http://psychologytoday.com ) as follows:

View The Original Research Paper HERE (Free PDF -internal link)

“(The) data … came out of an eight country random survey of 27,839 men ages 20-752. Using a questionnaire called the Men’s Attitudes to Life Events and Sexuality(MALES), the authors found men’s attitudes towards two key areas, masculinity and quality of life, differed markedly from the cultural stereotypes of guys as shallow creatures who are driven primarily by lust.

In the masculinity section of the study and across all countries, being seen as a “man of honor” was the single highest ideal for men, far more important than “being physically attractive,” “having success with women,” or “having an active sex life.” Together with “being in control of your own life” these two attributes accounted for about 60% of the responses. These findings held across all nationalities and across all age groups.

In the MALES section called Quality of Life, men were asked to rate the following seven

• Being in good health
• Satisfying sex life
• Harmonious family life
• Good relationship with partner/wife
• Enjoying life to the fullest
• Satisfying
• Having a nice home

Again, the findings were quite surprising. The top three answers were: “being in good health”; “a harmonious family life”; and “good relationship with partner/wife.” “A satisfying sex life” was last, tied with “a nice home.” While there was definitely variability in the top answersdepending on country, “a satisfying sex life” always came last. Even more astonishing were the findings in regard to age and marital/partner status. Younger men, age 20-39 still rated the same three goals as most important. When comparing single vs. married men, the only difference was that singles rated “enjoying live to the fullest” in second placealong with “a harmonious family life”-while “a good relationship with their partner” was ranked fourth. Again “a satisfying sex life” was rated last.

Amazingly enough men who had erectile dysfunction (ED) as well as those who did not, still rated “a satisfying sex life” the same way-dead last. Understandably, men with ED reported having a less satisfying sexual life than those without ED.”

View The Original Research Paper HERE (Free PDF -internal link)

Here’s the abstract:

Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections Between Sexuality and Spirituality

Introduction. The Men’s Attitudes to Life Events and Sexuality (MALES) study assessed the prevalence   of erectile dysfunction, and examined men’s attitudes and behavior in relation to this dysfunction.

Aim. To report on the attitudes of men, with and without self-reported erectile dysfunction, concerning masculine identity and quality of life.

Methods. The MALES Phase I study included 27,839 randomly selected men (aged 20–75 years) from eight countries (United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Mexico, and Brazil) who responded to a standardized computer-assisted telephone interview.Main Outcome Measure. Perceptions of masculinity and quality of life in men with and without erectile dysfunction.

Results. Men’s perceptions of masculinity differed substantially from stereotypes in the literature. Men reported that being seen as honorable, self-reliant, and respected by friends were important determinants of self-perceived masculinity. In contrast, factors stereotypically associated with masculinity, such as being physically attractive,sexually active, and successful with women, were deemed to be less important to men’s sense of masculinity. These findings appeared consistently across all nationalities and all age groups studied. For quality of life, factors that men deemed of significant importance included good health, harmonious family life, and a good relationship with their wife/partner. Such factors had significantly greater importance to quality of life than concerns such as having a good job, having a nice home, living life to the full, or having a satisfying sex life. Of note, rankings of constructs of masculinity and quality of life did not meaningfully differ in men with or without erectile dysfunction, and men with erectile dysfunction who did or did not seek treatment for their sexual dysfunction.

Conclusions. The present findings highlight the significance of partnered relationships and interpersonal factors in the management of erectile dysfunction, and empirically challenge a number of widely held stereotypes concerning men, masculinity, sex, and quality of life.

Sand MS, Fisher W, Rosen R, Heiman J, and Eardley I. Erectile dysfunction and constructs of masculinity and quality of life in the multinational Men’s Attitudes to Life Events and Sexuality (MALES) study. J Sex Med 2008;5:583–594.Key Words. Erectile Dysfunction; Quality of Life; Masculinity; Gender Identity

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March 2, 2010 - Posted by | Health Psychology, Sex & Sexuality, Uncategorized | , , , , , ,

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