The assessment of sexual attraction, types of attraction and inter-individual variability

Author/s Chiara Buizza, Paola Mazzardi, Vera Pagani, Alberto Ghilardi
Publishing Year 2015 Issue 2015/2
Language Italian Pages 18 P. 31-48 File size 137 KB
DOI 10.3280/RSC2015-002002
DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation click here

Below, you can see the article first page

If you want to buy this article in PDF format, you can do it, following the instructions to buy download credits

Article preview

FrancoAngeli is member of Publishers International Linking Association, Inc (PILA), a not-for-profit association which run the CrossRef service enabling links to and from online scholarly content.

Sexual attraction has always been considered a synonym or an element of sexual orientation, and it has rarely been treated has a phenomenon that deserved to be studied separately. This study starts from the consideration that sexual attraction and sexual orientation are independent constructs and that, therefore, the separate assessment of the sexual attraction could have important implications both clinically and in research context. In order to investigate the sexual attraction it was used a multidimensional questionnaire - the Sexual Attraction Questionnaire - of which it was proposed an Italian adaptation on an adult population. As evidenced by this article the questionnaire is a useful instrument to promote greater scientific understanding and a deeper clinical evaluation of individual processes underlying the sexual attraction.

Keywords: Sexual attraction, sexuality, questionnaire, types of sexual attraction, individual differences, multidimensionality

  1. Aicken C.R.H., Mercer C.H., Cassell J.A. (2013). Who reports absence of sexual attraction in Britain? Evidence from national probability surveys. Psychology ,Sexuality, 4, 2: 121-35. DOI: 10.1080/19419899.2013.774161
  2. Bartels A., Zeki S. (2000). The neural basis of romantic love. Neuroreport, 11, 17: 3829-34. DOI: 10.1097/00001756-200011270-00046
  3. Bell A.P., Weinberg M.S. (1978). Homosexualities. New York: Simon, Schuster.
  4. Berkey B.R., Perelman-Hall T., Kurdek L.A. (1990). The multidimensional scale of sexuality. Journal of Homosexuality, 19, 4: 67-87. DOI: 10.1300/J082v19n04_05
  5. Bogaert A.F. (2004). Asexuality: Prevalence and associated factors in a national probability sample. Journal of Sex Research, 41, 3: 279-87. DOI: 10.1080/00224490409552235
  6. Brotto L.A., Yule M.A. (2011). Physiological and subjective sexual arousal in selfidentified asexual women. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 40, 4: 699-712. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-010-9671-7
  7. Brotto L.A., Knudson G., Inskip J., Rhodes K., Erskine Y. (2010). Asexuality: A mixed methods approach. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 39, 3: 599-618. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-008-9434-x
  8. Buizza C., Imbasciati A. (2007). La dimensione psicosomatica dell’attrazione sessuale: una rassegna della letteratura. Rivista di Sessuologia, 31, 2: 82-8.
  9. Buizza C., Imbasciati A. (2009). La dimensione emotiva della sessualità. In: Cristini C., Ghilardi A., a cura di, Sentire e Pensare. Emozioni e Apprendimento fra Mente e Cervello. Milano: Springer.
  10. Busseri M.A., Willoughby T., Chalmers H., Bogaert A.F. (2008). On the association between sexual attraction and adolescent risk behavior involvement: Examining mediation and moderation. Developmental Psychology, 44, 1: 69-80. DOI: 10.1037/0012-1649.44.1.69
  11. Cantelmi T., Lambiase E. (2007). Legame affettivo e comportamento sessuale. Come lo stile di attaccamento influenza il comportamento sessuale. Psicoterapia e Scienze Umane, 2: 205-28. DOI: 10.1400/9212
  12. Coleman E. (1987). Assessment of sexual orientation. Journal of Homosexuality, 14, 1-2: 9-24. DOI: 10.1300/J082v14n01_02
  13. Costa M., Braun C., Birbaumer N. (2003). Gender differences in response to pictures of nudes: A magnetoencephalographic study. Biological Psychology, 63, 2: 129-47. DOI: 10.1016/S0301-0511(03)00054-1
  14. Davis C.M., Yarber W.L., Bauserman R., Schreer G., Davis S.L. (1997). Handbook of Sexuality-Related Measures. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  15. Dèttore D., editor (2005). Il Disturbo dell’Identità di Genere – Diagnosi, Eziologia, Trattamento. Milano: McGraw-Hill.
  16. Dèttore D. (2007). La varianza dell’orientamento sessuale. Rivista di Sessuologia, 31, 1: 1-16.
  17. Eagle M.N. (2005). Attaccamento e sessualità. Psicoterapia e Scienze Umane, 2: 151-64. DOI: 10.1400/64853.FernándezJ.,QuirogaM.A.,DelOlmoI.(2006a).Isthereanyrelationshipbetweensexualattractionandgendertypology?TheSpanishJournalofPsychology,9,1:3-9.DOI:10.1017/S1138741600005916
  18. Fernández J., Quiroga M.A., Del Olmo I. (2006b). Is sexual attraction independent of the instrumental and expressive traits? The Spanish Journal of Psychology, 9, 2: 162-79. DOI: 10.1017/S1138741600006065
  19. Fernández J., Quiroga M.A., Rodríguez A. (2006c). Dimensionalidad de la atracción sexual. Psicothema, 18, 3: 392-9.
  20. Fernández J., Quiroga M.A., Del Olmo I., Buizza C., Imbasciati A. (2009). Temporal stability and cross-national consistency of the dimensional structure of the Sexual Attraction Questionnaire (SAQ). The Spanish Journal of Psychology, 12, 2: 725-36. DOI: 10.1017/S1138741600002092
  21. Fernández J., Quiroga M.A., Ucaza V.J., Escorial S. (2012). Dimensionality and Transcultural Specificity of the Sexual Attraction Questionnaire (SAQ). The Spanish Journal of Psychology, 15, 1: 323-33. DOI: 10.5209/rev_SJOP.2012.V15.N1.37339
  22. Fisher H.E., Aron A., Mashek D., Li H., Brown L.L. (2002). Defining the brain systems of lust, romantic attraction, and attachment. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 31, 5: 413-9. DOI: 10.1023/A:1019888024255
  23. Galliher R.V., Rostosky S.S., Hughes H.K. (2004). School belonging, self-esteem, depressive symptoms in adolescents: An examination of sex, sexual attraction status, and urbanicity. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 33, 3: 235-45. DOI: 10.1023/B:JOYO.0000025322.11510.9d
  24. Giovazolias T., Davis P. (2001). How common is sexual attraction towards clients? The experiences of sexual attraction of counselling psychologist toward their clients and its impact on the therapeutic process. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 14, 4: 281-286. DOI: 10.1080/09515070110100974
  25. Hamann S., Herman R.A., Nolan C.L., Wallen K. (2004). Men and women differ in amygdala response to visual sexual stimuli. Nature Neuroscience, 7, 4: 411-6. DOI: 10.1038/nn1208
  26. Hinderliter A.C. (2009). Methodological issues for studying asexuality. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 38, 5: 619-21. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-009-9502-x
  27. Imbasciati A. (2004). A theoretical support for transgenerationality: the theory of protomental. Psychoanalytic Psychology, 21, 1: 83-98. DOI: 10.1037/0736-9735.21.1.83
  28. Imbasciati A., Buizza C. (2011). L’emozione Sessuale. Psicoanalisi e Neuropsicofisiologia di un’Emozione Negata. Napoli: Liguori Editore.
  29. Johnson A.M., Wadsworth J., Wellings K., Field J. (1994). Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles. Oxford: Blackwell Scientific Publications.
  30. Kaës R., Fainberg H., Enriquez M., Baranes J. (1993). Trasmissione della Vita Psichica tra Generazioni. Roma: Borla.
  31. Kinsey A.C., Pomeroy W.B., Martin C.E. (1948). Sexual Behavior in the Human Male. Philadelphia: Saunders.
  32. Klein F., Sepekoff B., Wolf T.J. (1985). Sexual orientation: A multi-variable dynamic process. Journal of Homosexuality, 11, 1-2: 35-49. DOI: 10.1300/J082v11n01_04.LiebowitzM.R.(1983).TheChemistryofLove.Boston:Little,BrownCo
  33. Lippa R.A. (2006). Is high sex drive associated with increased sexual attraction to both sexes? It depends on whether you are male or female. Psychological Science, 7, 1: 46-52. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2005.01663.x
  34. Lippa R.A. (2007). The relation between sex drive and sexual attraction to men and women: A cross-national study of heterosexual, bisexual, and homosexual men and women. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 36, 2: 209-22. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-006-9146-z
  35. Poston D.L., Baumle A.K. (2010). Patterns of asexuality in the United States. Demographic Research, 23, 18: 509-530. DOI: 10.4054/DemRes.2010.23.18
  36. Prause N., Graham C.A. (2007). Asexuality: Classification and characterization. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 36, 3: 341-56. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-006-9142-3
  37. Redoute J., Stoleru S., Gregoire M.C., Costes N., Cinotti L., Lavenne F., Le Bars D., Forest M.G., Pujol J.F. (2000). Brain Processing of Visual Sexual Stimuli in Human Males. Human Braing Mapping, 11, 3: 162-77. DOI: 10.1002/1097-0193(200011)11:3<162::AID-HBM30>3.0.CO;2-A
  38. Rostosky S.S., Owens G., Zimmerman R.S., Riggle E.D.B. (2003). Associations among sexual attraction status, school belonging, and alcohol and marijuana use in rural high school students. Journal of Adolescence, 26, 6: 741-51. DOI: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2003.09.002
  39. Sabatinelli D., Flaisch T., Bradley M.M., Fitzsimmons J.R., Lang P.J. (2004). Affective picture perception: Gender differences in visual cortex? Neuroreport, 15, 7: 1109-12. DOI: 10.1097/00001756-200405190-00005
  40. Shively M.G., De Decco J.P. (1977). Components of sexual identity. Journal of Homosexuality, 3, 1: 41-8. DOI: 10.1300/J082v03n01_04
  41. Stoller M.J. (1985). Observing the Erotic Imagination. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.
  42. Storms M.D. (1980). Theories of sexual orientation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 38, 5: 783-92. DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.38.5.783
  43. Wang Z., Yu G., Cascio C., Liu Y., Gingrich B., Insel T.R. (1999). Dopamine D2 receptor-mediated regulation of partner preferences in female prairie voles (microtus ochrogaster): A mechanism for pair bonding? Behavioral Neuroscience, 113, 3: 602-11. DOI: 10.1037/0735-7044.113.3.602
  44. Wellings K., Nanchahal K., Macdowall W., McManus S., Erens B., Mercer C.H., Johnson A.M., Copas A.J., Korovessis C., Fenton K.A., Field J. (2001). Sexual behaviour in Britain: Early heterosexual experience. Lancet, 358, 9296: 1843-50. DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(01)06885-4

Chiara Buizza, Paola Mazzardi, Vera Pagani, Alberto Ghilardi, La valutazione dell’attrazione sessuale, tipologie di attrazione e variabilità inter-individuale in "RIVISTA DI SESSUOLOGIA CLINICA" 2/2015, pp 31-48, DOI: 10.3280/RSC2015-002002