“Safe Sex” with Condoms Bad for Mental Health, Psych Researcher Finds
By Hilary White
PAISLEY, Scotland, August 4, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Research from Scotland finding that heterosexual sex without using condoms is more likely to make people happy than "safe sex" with condoms, has stirred controversy among "sexual health" campaigners. The lead researcher wrote of the survey respondents, "The more often they have sex without condoms, the better their mental health."
In the study, titled, "Condom Use for Penile-Vaginal Intercourse is Associated with Immature Psychological Defense Mechanisms," Professor Stuart Brody of the University of the West of Scotland in Paisley gave questionnaires to 111 Portuguese men and 99 women asking questions about their sex lives and their state of mind over a period of one month. The findings are to be published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behaviour.
The study's abstract gives the purpose as the examination of a hypothesis put forward by Sigmund Freud, "that use of immature psychological defense mechanisms correlates directly with frequency of condom use during PVI, but inversely with frequency of PVI [penile-vaginal intercourse] without condoms."
The survey found that "frequency of PVI with condoms correlated directly with use of immature defenses," according to a standard test of psychological reactions. It also found that "immature defenses" were associated with masturbation in both sexes. In general, the study concluded that condom use during PVI is associated with "psychological immaturity and predisposition to poorer mental health," including depression and suicidal tendencies.
Brody wrote, "The more often they have sex without condoms, the better their mental health." His findings suggest that condom use negates the mental health benefits of what he called "evolutionarily relevant sex." He theorized that there is a direct biochemical response in natural heterosexual relations that is blocked by condoms.
Brody wrote in the study, "Possible explanations for the interference of condoms with the health benefits of PVI include blocking of antidepressant and immunological agents in semen and genital secretions, reduced sexual satisfaction and intimacy, and psychopathology-prone persons who are more psychologically immature and/or heterosocially anxious being more likely to use condoms for PVI."
In an interview with the UK's Independent newspaper, Brody responded to criticisms from sex-campaigners at the Family Planning Association that his findings, if they were acted upon, would result in increases in sexually transmitted diseases and unplanned pregnancies.
"I have an interest in the best possible science," he said. "I don't want to let anything get in the way, whether its political correctness, or religion. I have deliberately not used the term 'heterosexual sex'," he said.
"Evolution is not politically correct, so of the very broad range of potential sexual behaviour, there is actually only one that is consistently associated with better physical and mental health and that is the one sexual behaviour that would be favoured by evolution. That is not accidental."
In 2007, Brody angered homosexualist activists in the UK when he published research that found intercourse between men and women is the only form of sexual behaviour that improves "psychological and physiological function." He found that levels of prolactin, the hormone that provides the body with sexual gratification, were 400 percent higher among male and female couples who had heterosexual intercourse than those engaging in other forms of sex.
Peter Tatchell, one of Britain's leading homosexualist spokesmen, called the research "unscientific and extreme" and said it contradicted other studies by the US sex researchers Masters and Johnson. Tatchell said, "Brody's is an extreme and disparaging stance to adopt and he seems to have an ideological agenda to promote conventional heterosexual intercourse."
Brody responded at the time, "The radical left wants sex research done, but only if the results are politically acceptable to them."
Brody's previous work has also criticized the disinformation commonly promulgated in the media about the transmission of AIDS among the general population and warned that political correctness has seriously muddied the issues.
His 1997 book "Sex at Risk: Lifetime number of partners, frequency of intercourse and low AIDS risk of vaginal intercourse," concluded that "ideological knowledge" about AIDS, that asserts that heterosexuals are at equal risk of contracting the disease as active homosexuals, is more prevalent in society than evidence-based scientific knowledge gained from objective research. One reviewer called the book a "succinct indictment of people who have conflated politics and science in setting AIDS policy over the past 15 years."
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