Gender differences in self-reported drinking-induced disinhibition of sexual behaviors
Summary, in English
Sex and drinking go hand-in-hand in Western societies. Men also tend to report more sexual disinhibition under the influence of alcohol and drugs than women. At a vacation resort, we conducted a survey of young men and women regarding self-reported alcohol-related sexual disinhibition (ARSD), and we administered the Drinking-Induced Disinhibition Scale (DIDS). We made several comparisons of behavioral patterns using the ARSD scale of the DIDS for each gender: kissing or having sex vs. no sexual contact, or having sex versus kissing or no contact. In general, men reported more ARSD than women. Men who reported either kissing or having sex the night before reported significantly more ARSD than men not reporting either kissing or having sex. Women who had had sex the night before reported more ARSD than women who had either kissed or not reported any sexual contact on the night before, but women who had kissed did not differ from women who had not had any sexual contact. We suggest that while the DIDS scale of alcohol-related sexual disinhibition is a valid instrument, gender bias exists. In conclusion, the DIDS does measure the constructs that it sets out to measure. However, significant gender differences do exist and appear to go beyond differences in actual behavior in terms of sexual disinhibition. Men and women describe themselves differently when they describe sexual behavior in general, even when they report similar recent behavior, and we suggest that these differences at least partly reflect sexual stereotypes.
- ISSN: 1055-0496