Announcing the 7th Annual SPSP Sexuality Pre-Conference!

Announcing the 7th Annual SPSP Sexuality Pre-Conference!

I am pleased to announce the seventh annual SPSP Sexuality Pre-Conference! It will be held next February prior to the annual meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Our last six pre-conferences were wildly successful and we are excited to further build on this tradition.

The next SPSP Sexuality Pre-Conference will take place on Thursday, February 27, 2020 at the Hyatt Regency in New Orleans. The theme will be "sex on the margins."  We selected this theme in order to highlight sexual practices, movements, and identities that are often overlooked in mainstream research. Among the topics that will be highlighted in this pre-conference are bisexuality and Black women’s sexuality.

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The HPV Vaccine is Underutilized--And How We Can Change That

The HPV Vaccine is Underutilized--And How We Can Change That

The human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection and it’s responsible for a number of negative health effects. In addition to genital warts, it has the potential to cause a number of cancers, including those of the cervix, anus, and throat. A vaccine that can prevent HPV (and, therefore, its associated health problems) has been around for nearly a decade; however, it continues to be widely underutilized in the United States.

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Why I Deleted My Academia.edu Account and Why You Should, Too

Why I Deleted My Academia.edu Account and Why You Should, Too

The traditional model of academic publishing restricts access to research by putting it in the hands of private companies. As a result, I’ve had to work hard to make my research available to those who wish to read it. I’ve done so by publishing accessible summaries on this blog, by publishing as much as I can in open-access journals, and by establishing profiles on file-sharing sites like Academia.Edu and ResearchGate, which allow you to store and share full-text uploads of papers with anyone. I will keep doing the first two going forward, but I’ve grown leery of the latter and have increasingly come to realize that these file-sharing websites aren’t an effective solution to the problems of academic publishing. In fact, I’ve grown quite concerned about these sites and have come to realize that academics need to pursue other means of sharing their work. Let me explain.

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Study Abroad With Me in Amsterdam for a Course on Sex and Culture

Study Abroad With Me in Amsterdam for a Course on Sex and Culture

I’m excited to announce a unique study abroad opportunity in conjunction with the Sexual Health Alliance. We are offering a one-week study abroad program in Amsterdam focused on sex and culture, which will take place in May 2020! Join us for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!

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ADHD After Dark: How ADHD Affects People’s Sex and Love Lives

ADHD After Dark: How ADHD Affects People’s Sex and Love Lives

How does attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) affect people in adult life? Specifically, what are the implications for people’s sexual and romantic relationships? 

For the answers to these questions, I spoke with a certified sex therapist, Dr. Ari Tuckman. He has just published a book titled ADHD After Dark, which explores how adult ADHD affects people in the bedroom and beyond. For this book, Tuckman surveyed more than 3,000 people who were in relationships in which one partner has ADHD and the other doesn’t in order to better understand when these relationships work—and when they don’t.  

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Science Fiction Sex Fantasies: Why Some People are Turned on by Impossible Scenarios

Science Fiction Sex Fantasies: Why Some People are Turned on by Impossible Scenarios

A large number of people have sexual fantasies that are impossible to act out because they feature elements of science fiction. As some evidence of this, I surveyed more than 4,000 Americans about their sexual fantasies for my book Tell Me What You Want and found that more than half of my respondents had fantasized about a fictional character from a book or movie, one-third had fantasized about a mythical creature (like a vampire or werewolf), one-quarter had fantasized about a cartoon or anime character, and one-sixth had fantasized about sex with an alien. That’s a lot of sci-fi sex!

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Sex and Disability: Intellectual Disabilities and the Right to Sexuality

Sex and Disability: Intellectual Disabilities and the Right to Sexuality

In many countries, including the United States, persons with intellectual disabilities are deemed unable to provide sexual consent. The argument behind this is usually that these individuals cannot understand the potential risks of sex and, therefore, they cannot offer informed consent. So does this mean that everyone with an intellectual deficit must necessarily remain celibate lifelong?

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No Strings Attached? Many Friends with Benefits are Actually Looking for Love

No Strings Attached? Many Friends with Benefits are Actually Looking for Love

When people become friends with benefits (FWBs), what is it that they truly want from that arrangement? Are they just in it for the “benefits” (that is, sex)? Or are they perhaps looking for more? I’ve conducted some research on this subject and here’s what I found.

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Being a Little Narcissistic Could Mean Having a Better Sex Life

Being a Little Narcissistic Could Mean Having a Better Sex Life

Narcissism is a frequently maligned personality trait that involves being self-centered, entitled, and holding grandiose views of oneself. Sex researchers have long been interested in how narcissism plays out in people’s sexual and romantic lives; to date, however, they’ve really only focused on the potentially harmful outcomes associated with being narcissistic, such as being more likely to commit infidelity [1]. New research challenges the widespread belief that narcissism is inherently bad, though. In fact, in some ways, narcissism just might be good for your sexual health and well-being. 

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The Flower That Tricks Insects Into Having Sex With It

The Flower That Tricks Insects Into Having Sex With It

I keep two plants in my home at all times. One is some leafy thing I bought years ago—I’m not really sure what it is, but it refuses to die and keeps growing taller no matter how infrequently I water it. The other is an orchid. I always like to have one around in bloom because the flowers are just gorgeous. Plus, orchids have a lot of sexual connotations, so it makes sense for me as a sex researcher to keep one around—it’s a sexy plant. However, I’ve come to develop an even greater appreciation for these flowers that goes well beyond their beauty and symbolism—it turns out that orchids actually have fascinating sex lives.

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Participants Needed For Sex Studies!

Participants Needed For Sex Studies!

If you're reading this, odds are that you love learning about the latest sex research. But have you ever wanted to go beyond just reading about it and perhaps take part in an actual sex study? If so, check out my Sex Studies page, which is updated regularly with calls for participation from sex scientists across the globe. Nine studies have already been added since the beginning of this year, with new opportunities coming in each month!

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Why Sex Should Be About Having Fun Instead of Achieving Goals

Why Sex Should Be About Having Fun Instead of Achieving Goals

A lot of people approach sex in a goal-oriented fashion, thinking that there are certain things they need to do or “achieve” every time. High on this list is the idea that everyone is “supposed” to have an orgasm each time they have sex. So pervasive is this idea that some people do not even categorize certain sex acts as sex unless an orgasm occurs. Moreover, some people see a lack of orgasm (even if it only happens once or on rare occasions) as an inherent sign of sexual dysfunction.

This view of orgasm as essential not just to the definition of sex, but also to people’s idea of successful sex creates something sex therapists have termed the orgasmic imperative.

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Study: 1 in 8 Young Adults Say Watching Porn is a Form of Cheating

Study: 1 in 8 Young Adults Say Watching Porn is a Form of Cheating

When it comes to infidelity, which behaviors count and which ones don’t? It turns out that different people answer this question in very different ways.. That said, there are some things that people seem to agree on more than others.

At least for those in monogamous relationships, people largely agree that having sexual intercourse with someone else is a form of cheating. The same goes for taking a shower with another person or sending them naked photos. But what about just watching porn by yourself? Do people typically categorize that as a form of infidelity? A recent study published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior suggests that some do.

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Celebrating 66 Years of Women's Sex Research This Week

Celebrating 66 Years of Women's Sex Research This Week

Sixty-six years ago this week (August 20, 1953), the media first reported on some of the major findings from Alfred Kinsey's classic book Sexual Behavior in the Human Female. As many of you probably know, this was the first book of its kind to truly explore women's sexual attitudes and behaviors from a scientific point of view.

Kinsey's book sent shockwaves around the world and it was quickly labeled "obscene" by many, due to the prevailing views on sex in the 1950s. Today, though, we look back on Kinsey's brave work as one of the most important publications on human sexuality ever. Kinsey's research was groundbreaking in so many ways, but largely because it debunked many myths and misconceptions about women's sexuality.

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People Who Use More Emojis Have More Sex

People Who Use More Emojis Have More Sex

What does your use of emojis say about your sex and dating life? According to a new study published in the journal PLoS ONE, a lot, actually. In fact, frequent use of emojis with potential dates is linked to not only having sex more often, but also to a more active and successful dating life. 

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The Ten Most-Read Questions and Answers on Sex and Psychology

The Ten Most-Read Questions and Answers on Sex and Psychology

Here's an updated list of the ten most read question-and-answer features of all time on the blog. These questions (all submitted by readers of Sex and Psychology) span a very wide range of topics. Many of them fall under the category of “What’s normal when it comes to sex?”  By contrast, others reflect curiosity about diverse sexual practices, as well as interest in better understanding what's safe when it comes to sex. 

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Sex and Psychology Podcast: How ADHD Affects People's Sex Lives and Relationships

Sex and Psychology Podcast: How ADHD Affects People's Sex Lives and Relationships

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a term that most people are familiar with. But when we hear about someone having ADHD, we tend to think about children and adolescents and how this disorder affects them at home or in school because most people who are diagnosed happen to be kids and there’s a widespread belief that people eventually “outgrow” ADHD.

The reality, however, is that most kids with ADHD become adults with ADHD. Also, there are a heck of a lot of adults out there with undiagnosed ADHD. So what are the implications of ADHD in adult life, especially in people’s personal lives? Does it impact the way they approach sex and relationships?

I recently interviewed Dr. Ari Tuckman for the Sex and Psychology Podcast in order to learn more.

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We May Be Able to Eradicate HIV Without Ever Finding a Cure For It

We May Be Able to Eradicate HIV Without Ever Finding a Cure For It

We are getting closer and closer to eradicating HIV, a sexually transmitted infection that has contributed to the deaths of at least 32 million people worldwide since the early 1980s. However, something that’s likely to surprise a lot of people is that scientists believe we may be able to eradicate HIV before we ever even find a cure for it. Yep, you read that right.

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