Social phobia is a crippling mental disorder in which social situations are avoided or endured with intense fear (American Psychiatric Association, 2000); including, but not limited to, sexual interactions with others (Bodinger et al., 2002). Research suggests that sexual functioning disturbances are commonly present in those with social phobia (Bodinger et al., 2002; Kafka & Hennen, 2002; Kashdan et al., 2011; Mick & Hollander, 2006). Thus, it is important for the practicing clinician to be aware of the possible differences in sexual functioning in this population. The present study assessed the valuing rates of hypothetical sexual experiences in a high verse low socially anxious sample utilizing a modified delay discounting procedure. In the modified task questions assessing the perceived value of sexual activities were asked (i.e. What would you prefer?: 3 minutes of sexual activity right now or 30 minutes of sexual activity in 1 week). Those with high social anxiety were not found to significantly differ from those with low social anxiety on the hypothetical sexual activities delay discounting task. Possible research alternatives and recommendations are discussed.
Barry J. Ries
Date of Degree
Master of Arts (MA)
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Bretz, M. N. (2012). Devaluing sex to cope with anxiety: A comparative investigation of sexual delay discounting with high and low socially phobic populations. [Master’s thesis, Minnesota State University, Mankato]. Cornerstone: A Collection of Scholarly and Creative Works for Minnesota State University, Mankato. https://cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/etds/21/
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