Thursday, March 24, 2011

Are you lonesome tonight?

Hey guys! So my colleagues at HGLHC found a study that links HIV- risk behaviors with loneliness and a lack of social connectedness. Here are some excerpts:

“This article examines the Loneliness and Sexual Risk Model (LSRM) which postulates that loneliness is associated with sexual risk behavior and that this relationship is mediated by the influence of substance use and compulsive behavior. Therefore ,successfully addressing loneliness and its underlying causes likely to result in subsequent reductions in risk behaviors”.

“There is a growing body of research that focuses on sexual compulsivity and the use of the internet as a primary vehicle to act out sexually (Dew & Chaney, 2004). Because of the possible consequences of being exposed in public venues and the lack of alternative venues for socialization, the internet is an appealing method for some MSM to meet sexual partners (Brown, Maycock, & Burns, 2005). Internet use facilitates the process of identifying potential sex partners online and setting up sexual encounters among MSM, Model of Sexual Risk 69 which in turn have been associated with a rise of HIV infection in that population (Benotsch, Kalichman, & Cage, 2002). This is particularly true for those who feel a lack of social connectedness (Chaney & Dew, 2003).”

“An efficient and cost-effective way of incorporating social interaction and skill practice into therapy is to provide group interventions. Groups are a social microcosm that can provide individuals with the opportunity to practice social behaviors and interpersonal skills, as well as facilitate the generalization and application of the learned skills to real life in a safe environment.”

So, what do you guys think? We all get lonely, but there are some great alternatives so you can keep yourself surrounded with supportive people and make healthy choices for yourself. Have you checked out our social group for young gay and bisexual men, MPowerCT? Ever heard about our group for men called Living Soulfully, a group that supports the spiritual lives of gay/bi/questioning men?

You can even get out of your loneliness rut by texting or emailing or Facebooking the monthly Safety Net messages! Are you already on our Safety Net team? If not, email Jamie to get started (jamieb@hglhc.org).


The link to the article is here: http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~db=all~content=a773636800

Compulsivity, Substance Use, and Loneliness: The Loneliness and Sexual Risk Model (LSRM)
Authors: Hctor L. Torresa; Cheryl Gore-Feltonb

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