Project Title

The development of erotic desires

Department

Psychology

Abstract

Diverse theorists have postulated that people become sexually excited by the sort of people who were relatively exotic and unfamiliar to them during their development up to and just after puberty (the so-called "exotic becomes erotic" or "familiarity breeds disinterest" models). I examine such models in relation to a specific paraphilic interest: men's sexual excitement toward short hair on men. The study is based on a web-based survey of 264 men who answered an extensive questionnaire posted on a site concerned with discussions of men's short haircuts. The exotic becomes erotic model predicts that men who developed a sexual interest in men's short haircuts around puberty would have experienced fewer males with short hair than the men who developed this sexual interest later in life. To evaluate the model, I examined the relationships between how normative (or "nonexotic") men's short hair was during childhood and adolescence and the age (absolute and in relation to puberty) at which short hair became sexual for the men. Diverse measures of the normativeness of short hair during childhood and adolescence were used, including the number of men with short hair the respondents knew, how normative short hair was for different classes of men (e.g., adult men, adolescent males, boys, male friends), and who (e.g., father, self, older brother, male friend) had short hair. Contrary to the exotic becomes erotic model, there was no relationship between measures of short hair normativeness (or non-normativeness) and age at which the men became sexually interested in short hair.

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Poster

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The development of erotic desires

Diverse theorists have postulated that people become sexually excited by the sort of people who were relatively exotic and unfamiliar to them during their development up to and just after puberty (the so-called "exotic becomes erotic" or "familiarity breeds disinterest" models). I examine such models in relation to a specific paraphilic interest: men's sexual excitement toward short hair on men. The study is based on a web-based survey of 264 men who answered an extensive questionnaire posted on a site concerned with discussions of men's short haircuts. The exotic becomes erotic model predicts that men who developed a sexual interest in men's short haircuts around puberty would have experienced fewer males with short hair than the men who developed this sexual interest later in life. To evaluate the model, I examined the relationships between how normative (or "nonexotic") men's short hair was during childhood and adolescence and the age (absolute and in relation to puberty) at which short hair became sexual for the men. Diverse measures of the normativeness of short hair during childhood and adolescence were used, including the number of men with short hair the respondents knew, how normative short hair was for different classes of men (e.g., adult men, adolescent males, boys, male friends), and who (e.g., father, self, older brother, male friend) had short hair. Contrary to the exotic becomes erotic model, there was no relationship between measures of short hair normativeness (or non-normativeness) and age at which the men became sexually interested in short hair.