Oral contraceptives, also known as birth control pills (PAs from now on), have been available on the world market for five decades. At present, the use of PA is massifier worldwide, being consumed by more than 100 million women on the planet. In recent years, in Latin America has been detected a dramatic increase in the use of oral contraceptives, and Chile is not the exception. In this sense, it is probable that the increase in the consumption of PAs in Chile is linked to the increase of women who decide to pursue higher studies and to develop professional careers. Concurrently, a wide field of research has been focused on the physiological and psychological effect of the consumption of oral contraceptives on human behavior, being mating behavior one of the main topics of research. However, in Chile as in most Latin American countries there is a lack of studies on the implications of the consumption of oral contraceptives on human behavior. In the present study, we investigated in a group of 164 university young women (Mean ± Standard Deviation: 19.27± 2.88 years) of Chile the impact of the use of oral contraceptives on mating behavior. Accordingly, we have applied a validated psychometric test to assessed mate value, one of the more relevant components of mating behavior i.e., the Mate Value Questionnaire. Mate value can be defined as a construct that incorporates a number of physical, psychological, and social dimensions that are related to an individual's ability to find, attract, and successfully retain a partner. This questionnaire is composed by 22 items and 7 subscales that are answered in a Likert Scale of 7 values. The Mate Value Questionnaire showed a high reliability (α = .85). According with previous studies that showed a decrease in sexual satisfaction and desire on women that consume oral contraceptives, we predicted a decrease of mating behavior and, then, a decrease on Mate Value for those women that use oral contraceptives. This effect was expected for all subscales of this questionnaire with the exception of relationship history subscale since women that consume oral contraceptives reported to have more diverse sexual partners on previous studies. The results show differences between women who use oral contraceptives (n = 87 women: 19.60 ± 2.89 years) in comparison to those who do not (n = women: 18.90 ± 2.84 years). However, the differences were, in general, opposed to our expectations being the consumers of oral contraceptives who presented the highest values of the general index of the Mate Value Questionnaire, and, concretely, for the subscales of relationship history, views of the opposite sex, and looks. In addition, we have failed into found any differences between groups in subscales that were not associated to physical appearance, such as wealth, sociality and fear of failure. The results suggest that the use of hormonal contraceptives does not modify the social and parental behavior of the women, although their use seems to be associated with a greater self-perception of attractiveness and greater diversity in sexual life. This study provides new information that will increase the understanding and discussion about the hypothetical effect that would or would not, the consumption of the PA on the pairing behavior. It is important to point out that the field of research on changes in the sexual preferences of women, derived from hormonal states, is in an important discussion process. Therefore, we believe that it is critical to carry out research in the future in order to elucidate the real robustness of this phenomenon, improving our understanding about the behavioral effects of consuming oral contraceptives.
Durante los últimos años en Chile se ha detectado una masificación en el uso de anticonceptivos orales. Sin embargo, en Chile y al igual que en casi todos los países latinoamericanos prácticamente no se han investigado sus implicancias sobre la conducta humana. Específicamente, este estudio evaluó el impacto del uso de estos anticonceptivos sobre la conducta de emparejamiento en un grupo de 164 mujeres jóvenes universitarias, con una media de edad igual a 19 años y provenientes de cuatro universidades chilenas. Para ello se utilizó la adaptación chilena del Cuestionario de Componentes del Valor de Pareja que está compuesto por 22 ítems que se responden en una escala Likert de siete valores. Los resultados señalan diferencias entre las mujeres que consumen píldoras anticonceptivas (PA) y las que no lo hacen. Las consumidoras presentan los mayores valores del índice general del cuestionario sobre los componentes del valor de pareja y las subescalas de historia de relaciones de pareja, apreciación desde el sexo opuesto y apariencia. Estos resultados indican que las mujeres consumidoras de la PA se autoperciben y creen que el sexo contrario las evalúa como atractivas y muestran una vida sexual más diversificada, no mostrando diferencias en los otros aspectos relevantes para el valor de pareja no vinculados centralmente al atractivo físico. En definitiva, los resultados parecen indicar que el consumo de anticonceptivos hormonales no modifica la conducta social y parental de las mujeres, aunque su uso parece estar asociado con una mayor autopercepción de atractivo y mayor diversidad sexual.
The Adult Attachment Revised Scale is a measure of relationship attachment that contains three dimensions: closeness, dependence and anxiety. In Study 1, the scale was translated and applied to a sample of 420 university students in order to assess reliability. In addition, the scale criterion validity was estimated through measures of self-perception and affectivity. The results of Study 1 supported the internal consistency of two dimensions of attachment, but dependence was lower than expected (α = .62). A confirmatory factor analysis was conducted and failed to reach a convergent fit, thus demonstrating that two of the items in dependence were considered problematic. In Study 2, difficult items in Study 1 were reworded and the new version of the scale was applied to 81 participants. The results of two subsequent CFAs showed adequate fit of the scale and increased internal consistency with this new wording (α > .73), which replaced the expression "depend on others" by "getting help from others", which is a better construct representation of the meaning of dependence in the context of attachment closeness. Therefore, not only did we adapt the three dimensions of the attachment scale, but also provided evidence of its validity related to locally adapted instruments.
A Escala Revisada de Apego Adulto é uma medida de apego relacional com três dimensões: proximidade, dependência e ansiedade. No Estudo 1, traduzimos a escala e a aplicamos em uma amostra de 420 universitários, visando avaliar sua confiabilidade. Estimamos ainda o critério de validade da escala mediante comparação com medidas de auto-percepção e afetividade. Os resultados do Estudo 1 apoiam a consistência interna inicial de duas das dimensões do apego, porém a da dependência foi mais baixa do que o esperado (α = 0,62). Realizamos uma análise fatorial confirmatória que não atingiu um ajuste convergente, indicando dois itens da dimensão de dependência como problemáticos. No Estudo 2, reformulamos os itens problemáticos do Estudo 1, e aplicamos a nova versão da escala em 81 participantes. Os resultados das duas AFC subsequentes mostraram um ajuste adequado da escala e um incremento da consistência interna com a nova redação (α > 0,73), a qual substituiu a expressão "depender dos demais" por "conseguir ajuda dos demais". Dessa forma, conseguimos não só efetuar uma adaptação dos três construtos da escala, como também encontramos evidências da sua validação por meio da comparação com as outras escalas.
Background: Sexual behavior usually begins in adolescence, and is mediated by biological, personality and socio-cultural variables which can affect the expression of preventive and risky sexual performance, as well as sex and age differences. Aim: To determine sex differences in the age of sexual initiation, the use ofprotective methods and mate selectivity in young men and women, as well as preventive practices according to age, and the prevalence of partner aggression. Subjects and Methods: Participants were 484 university students from public and private institutions, aged 22 ± 3 years (59% women) assessed using a diversity of self-report measures of personality traits, romantic relationship quality, sexual role, attachment type, socio-sexual openness, and self-esteem; they also answered questions regarding sexual behavior, and violence. Results: Differences in age of sexual initiation, risky sexual behavior, and socio-sexual openness were observed between men and women. Aggression prevalence in romantic relationships also varied according to sex and age. Similarities and differences in patterns of behavior and personality variables were observed in relationship quality, sexual role, kindness, and responsibility in males and females. Conclusions: The findings present consistencies with the international evidence and differences that may be due to context specificities, providing also an empirical referent to consider in health planning.