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Try out PMC Labs and tell us what you think. Learn More. To determine association between sexual desire and marital satisfaction and sex guilt among a sample of Iranian female university students. The data presented here were obtained from a total of married Iranian female university students who were selected via a multi-cluster sampling method from universities of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation, Tarbiat Modarres, and Islamic Azad.
Pearson correlation coefficient and regression analysis methods were used to analyse the data. Also marital satisfaction and sex guilt were able to predict 31 percent of the variance of sexual desire. Marital satisfaction and sex guilt are two factors that ificantly affect fluctuations in sexual desire of Iranian female university students. Healthy sexual functioning is an important component of well-being. It is able to produce a mutual and t pleasure in couples and even help them cope more efficiently with stresses and problems of daily life 1.
An important factor in a happy and successful marriage is having a pleasurable sex life, while non-pleasurable sex life can lead to frustration and feeling of insecurity in couples 1. Dysfunctional sexual relationships may occur due to different reasons, but sexual desire is among the main factors that lead to difficulty in sexual functioning.
According to statistics, sexual desire problems -especially low sexual desire- is the most common sexual complaint among women 3 , 4. This is a complicated and interesting phenomenon which has puzzled the scholars for many years. He also mentions that the spectrum of sexual desire intensity fluctuates between aversion, disinclination, indifference, interest, need, and passion.
Although many individuals have a pattern of desire throughout their lives, an individual's sexual desire may vary along this spectrum 5. Regan and Atkins define sexual desire as a motivational state that le to interest and inclination to a sexual object or sexual activity.
They distinguish sexual desire from psychological and physiological sexual arousal 6. Different factors affect the fluctuation and changes in sexual desire which can be categorized into physiological factors and psychological factors 7. Different types of cancer as well as diabetes mellitus are examples of physiological risk factors. Emotions, maladaptive cognitions, lack of education regarding sexual functioning, and couple distress are among examples of psychological risk factors 7. Also, cultural factors such as racial, ethnic and religious background often affect a person's beliefs, expectations, and behaviors in sexual relationships 7.
It has been reported that cognitive factors mainly automatic thoughts during sexual activity were the best predictors of sexual desire. There are so many different psychological factors that may affect sexual desire which have not been studied yet in Iranian population. One of these factors is marital satisfaction. Studies have found direct relationship between frequency of sexual intercourse and marital satisfaction 10 , In other words, men and women who reported that they are happy and satisfied with the frequency of their sexual activity had higher levels of sexual and marital satisfaction.
Also relationship between marital satisfaction and sexual satisfaction has been confirmed in various studies 12 - In another study, Hurlbert et al. The lack of research investigating sexuality within marriage is, by itself, a compelling reason to explore this topic.
Feeling guilty about sexual issues is another factor that may affect sexual desire Sex guilt affects different aspects of personal life, especially relationship with partner. People who feel guilty always worry about violating moral rules and they feel like they are bad persons when they engage in a sexual behavior. Attitude toward sexual issues, such as sex guilt, is one of the most common reasons of sexual dissatisfaction and sometimes even formation of sexual dysfunction. These kinds of attitudes lead to problems such as premature ejaculation and sexual impotence in men and low sexual desire and anorgasmia in women Because sex guilt has emotional and personality components, it influences not only the individual's perception of sexual behavior, but also can aid or inhibit the causation of specific sexual behaviors.
Thus sex guilt influence the continuation of sexual behavior more sex guilt le to lesser chance of repeating of the behavior that evokes sex guilt and may have baneful effect on future sexual function and satisfaction Also research has shown that discomfort with sexual issues and sexual dissatisfaction psychological and physiological are correlated with high levels of sex guilt during first intercourse, high current and future sex guilt, and increased chance of sexual dysfunction Mehrabi and Dadfar also found that sex guilt is one of the factors that influence sexual dysfunction There has been no study in the field of the relationship between sex guilt and sexual desire in Iranian literature, so this factor was also selected to be investigated here.
Considering the issues presented above, it seems that despite high rate of sexual desire problems in women and its negative consequences, there are still so many questions that have not been answered in this area, especially in Iranian women. This is the reason why in this study the relationship between marital satisfaction and sex guilt with sexual desire is being addressed. We hypothesized that marital satisfaction is positively related to sexual desire and sex guilt is negatively related to sexual desire in Iranian women.
We also intended todetermine the role of each of these variables in explaining the variations and fluctuations of sexual desire in women. Study population consisted of all married female students aged years who were selected via a multi-cluster sampling method from Social Welfare and Rehabilitation, Tarbiat Modarres, and Islamic Azad Universities [North branch in Tehran] in undergraduate and graduate programs in Exclusion criteria were pregnancy, menopause, having a specific disease such as diabetes mellitus, thyroid diseases, any type of cancer, central nervous system diseases e.
Data gathering was carried out via pre-deed questionnaires and checklists see below during the last 30 minutes of class time. First, the researcher gave an explanation about the questionnaires, the topic of the study, the inclusion and exclusion criteria. Then, the eligible students were asked to complete the questionnaires.
Confidentiality was preserved and the participants were not asked to write down their names on the questionnaires. All the participants completed consent forms before participation. While the sample population was subjects, eventually data of women were used three questionnaires were excluded because of invalid answering, 2 were excluded because of filling out the questionnaires incompletely and 3 were excluded because of being student in the major of psychology.
A questionnaire was deed by the researchers to assess demographic data including sex, age, marital status, marriage duration, education, university, pregnancy status, consumption of a specific drug, alcohol and narcotic, and any physical disease or psychological disorder. This questionnaire was originally deed by Foweres and Olson and the original form has questions In this study the short form 47 questions was implemented. Psychometric properties of the questionnaire are satisfactory Correlation of the questionnaire with life satisfaction was 0. Also the scale can discriminate between couples with marital problems and those without This inventory consists of 50 questions and has been deed by Mosher in in order to assess guilt about sexual issues.
It is in Likert scale and measures sex guilt in a range of Psychometric properties of this scale have been confirmed in several studies Test-retest reliability with two weeks interval among university student was 0. Content validity was assessed using Kendal coefficient among 7 psychology professors and was 0. Convergent and discriminate validity of the questionnaire was also confirmed Before implementation, the index was translated by the researcher.
Afterwards, a person who was completely fluent in both English and Persian language but was unfamiliar with the subject of the study translated the index back to English. Then items which were not compatible with the original questions were revised. At this stage the questionnaire was completed by 10 subjects while researcher asked them to read the questions one by one and tell the meaning of each item to make sure that it is comprehensible in Iranian subjects.
Items which implied a different meaning were revised. Then questionnaire was completed by 45 subjects who met the inclusion criteria but were not among the study sample. Content validity was assessed using Kendal coefficient among 4 psychology professors and was 0. Pearson correlation was applied in order to determine correlations between variables of the study. Stepwise regression analysis was done to determine the share of marital satisfaction and sex guilt in explaining the variance of sexual desire in women.
To examine the hypotheses of the study, Pearson correlation coefficients between the scores of marital satisfaction, sex guilt and sexual desire were calculated. Correlations among all variables of the study and descriptive information of scales are presented in table 1. of bivariate correlation analyses among all variables of the study in Iranian female university students. To determine the share of marital satisfaction and sex guilt in explaining the variance of sexual desire in women, regression analysis method was used. The are shown in table 2.
Stepwise multiple regression for marital satisfaction and sex guilt, predicting sexual desire in Iranian female students. As it is shown, adjusted R 2 in the last step is 0. As it was mentioned earlier, there is a ificant positive relationship between marital satisfaction and sexual desire. This is in line with research on the relationship between marital and sexual satisfaction with frequency of intercourse 10 , 11 and the relationship between marital and sexual satisfaction 12 - Also Carvalho and Nobre in their study found that participants from the low desire group presented less dyadic adjustment Overall we can propose that marital satisfaction is one of the most important factors affecting sexual desire.
It seems that conflict between partners le to decrease in sexual satisfaction, frequency of intercourse, and lack of sexual interest and desire But we should be aware that the sample of this study was only women. Marital dissatisfaction may have different influences on sexual desire among males. So, choosing couple samples and comparing their with each other can lead to interesting . It was confirmed that there is a ificant negative relationship between sex guilt and desire.
Person's attitude toward sexual issues, such as sex guilt, is one of the most common reasons of formation of sexual dissatisfaction and problems. Sadock and Sadock also believed that sex guilt and moral restrictions influence sexual dysfunction, especially low sexual desire and arousal disorder and anorgasmia We can suppose that sex guilt is a cultural issue.
In eastern cultures- especially Islamic cultures- sexual issues are taboo and people rarely discuss about sexual subject in public places or educational institutes. On the other hand sexual intercourse before marriage is prohibited. These restrictions are tougher on girls in Iran because they have to be virgins till they get married. Girls repeatedly receive this message that sexual intercourse and issues are inappropriate and sinful. As a result this guilt toward sexual issues establishes and they feel guilty when they have sex even with their husbands.
This is more prominent when years between puberty and marriage gets longer as individual has to struggle with that sex guilt for a longer time and on a daily basis and sex basically becomes conflicting for them. The limitations of this study and recommendations for future studies are listed below:. Sample of the study was only women. The may be different in men. So, choosing couple samples and comparing their may lead to interesting findings. The age range of the sample was between 18 and 40 years, so choosing women of different age groups is suggested.
Only students were studied here. Choosing a sample of general population is suggested. Self report measures have their own limitations, so using qualitative methods e. NT and NMB conceived and deed the evaluation and helped to draft the manuscript.
AP participated in deing the evaluation. NT collected the clinical data. NMB re-evaluated the clinical data. NT and NMB interpreted them. All authors participated in statistical analysis. BE revised the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. Sexual desire in Iranian female university students: role of marital satisfaction and sex guilt. Iran J Psychiatry Behave Sci ; 8 4 : National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Iran J Psychiatry Behav Sci.
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