Multiple Partners in the Age of AIDS: Self-consciousness Theory and HIV Risk Behavior

Mendez, Roque V.; Hulsey, Timothy L.; Archer, Richard L.
December 2001
Current Psychology;Winter2001, Vol. 20 Issue 4, p349
Academic Journal
In two studies, we found consistent correlations among gender, self-consciousness, and high-risk sexual behavior in college students. Men higher in public self-consciousness reported more sexual partners, but less pleasurable sexual experiences. Among women higher in private self-consciousness, using sex to assuage feelings of loneliness was associated with a greater number of sexual partners. However, higher levels of private self-consciousness coupled with a view of sex as a way to satisfy emotional needs predicted fewer sexual partners. A closer examination of how self-consciousness, attitudes toward sexual activity, and gender influence decisions to engage in high-risk sexual behaviors is proposed.


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