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BDSM Correlated With Psychological Wellbeing

Posted on June 15, 2013 at 1:10 AM

A new study in the Journal of Sexual Medicine has shown a correlation between BDSM and robust mental health.


 

The study compared individuals who participate in BDSM with a group of controls and looked at personality traits such as extraversion, neuroticism, attachment style and general wellbeing. It found that while individuals who engage in BDSM tend to be less agreeable, more open to new experiences, less neurotic, and report a greater overall level of psychological wellbeing.

 


Past studies have tended to focus on whether or not people who practice BDSM have higher rates of depression or other mental health issues (spolier - they don’t). What is unique about this study is that it is one of the first to look at the BDSM community from a perspective of health and personality differences, rather than simply searching for signs of psychopathology.

 


Of course, while it definitely is a step in the right direction, the study also raises more questions than it answers. Does this mean that practicing BDSM raises your psychological well being, or is understanding and being in touch with your sexuality the key? Are people who are open to new experiences simply more likely to have tried a whole range of different sexual activities, and discovered that they enjoy BDSM? Are there any unique positive personality traits that might also be present in groups of people who identify as sexually “vanilla”, or asexual?


Hopefully there will be more research to come as the psychological community increases it’s understanding of the role of sexuality as a fundamental part of mental health and wellbeing.


Want to know more?


You can find a summary of the study here, or find out how to stay safe sane and consensual here.

 

Categories: Kinky, Mental health, Educational

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