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Sexual variation and mental health 

Sexual variation and mental health
Chapter:
Sexual variation and mental health
Author(s):

Gurvinder Kalra

, Antonio Ventriglio

, Christian Foerster

, and Dinesh Bhugra

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198723646.003.0033
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date: 30 November 2021

Sexuality and sexual interest, along with sexual functioning, are an innate and crucial part of human functioning and identity. Sexual orientation defines us as individuals and gives us a specific identity which relates to our social functioning and social identity. Such an identity makes it easier to function not only as individuals but also as social beings, enabling us to connect with others in different ways and at varying levels of intimacy. Individuals are emotionally affected by their sexual attraction to others and also by their abilities to sexually satisfy themselves and others. Sexuality also forms a part of the reproductive ability and is also meant for pleasure. Sexual variation or diversity is sexual behaviour that varies from the usual and commonly understood ‘hetero’-sexual behaviour. Cultural and social attitudes affect behaviours and acceptance of sexual variations.

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