Personality, Emotional, and Mental Health Factors Associated with Safer Sex and Unsafe Sex
Black Pride and Gay Pride are dangerous slogans like White Pride or Straight Pride. Gay and Black are not achievements but accidents of birth. One must not be ashamed, but that's not the same as being proud. Pride should lie only in what one does with one's Blackness or Gayness.1
Two men have sexual liaisons: one engages in safer sex behavior; the other does not. What characteristics and aspects of personality differentiate the two men? Do personality, emotions, and mental states play a part in whether homosexually active men practice safer sex? These questions, with important implications for assisting homosexually active men to modify their sexual behavior to avoid contracting or transmitting Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), are the topic of this chapter.
Much of the empirical research on the relationship between personality and sexual behavior has emerged from Eysenck's studies in extroversion-introversion, personality, and sexual performance. Reviewing evidence from three major studies,2 Eysenck [ 1979] suggests that in comparison with introverts, extroverts have intercourse earlier, more frequently, with more different partners, in more different positions, with more varied sexual behavior outside of intercourse, and with longer pre-coital love play. In a large study investigating the sexual behavior and attitudes of both students and members of the British general public, the two major independent factors or axes distinguishing sexual behavior were libido, or sexual