Stigma and Sexual Compulsivity in a Community-Based Sample of HIV-Positive Gay and Bisexual Men.

Published: October 1, 2011

Abstract

A better exploration of factors associated with sexual compulsivity (SC) among various subpopulations may help to explain its etiology, development, and course, as well as provide implications for treatment. Criticisms of SC highlight the need to have a better understanding of SC that takes into account both behavioral and psychosocial variables such as stigma, particularly stigma related to sexual orientation and HIV status. The purpose of this study was to investigate the association of SC with sexual behavior and stigma in a sample of HIV-positive gay and bisexual men. A cross-sectional, street-intercept method was adapted to survey a sample of 127 HIV-positive gay and bisexual males at two large-scale LGBT community events in the fall of 2008 and spring of 2009. We found that the number of recent male sexual partners (AOR = 1.05) and internalized HIV stigma (AOR = 8.20) were significantly associated with SC symptomology, while internalized homonegativity and interpersonal HIV stigma were not. These findings contradict many prominent criticisms of SC while highlighting the need to better understand the mechanisms related to the development of SC symptomology and the potential role stigma may have for the psychosexual well-being of HIV-positive gay and bisexual men.

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