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Emotion Regulation and Sex Addiction among College Students

Abstract

For individuals with sexual addiction, sexual behaviors often are the primary means of regulating distressing or undesirable emotion. In this study, we sought to examine differences in aspects of emotion regulation between students in the clinical range of sexual addiction and those in the nonclinical range. Among a sample of 337 college students, 57 (16.9 %) scored in the clinical range of sexual addiction and students in the clinical range differed significantly from students in the nonclinical range on three aspects of emotion regulation: (a) nonacceptance of emotional responses, (b) limited engagement in goal-directed behaviors in response to negative affect, and (c) minimal emotion regulation strategies. Implications for interventions on college campuses are provided.

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Correspondence to Craig S. Cashwell.

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Cashwell, C.S., Giordano, A.L., King, K. et al. Emotion Regulation and Sex Addiction among College Students. Int J Ment Health Addiction 15, 16–27 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11469-016-9646-6

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Keywords

  • Sexual addiction
  • College students
  • Emotion regulation