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Cannabis can enhance intimacy throughout intercourse by lowering anxiousness or emotions of disgrace, in accordance with a brand new examine recently published within the Culture, Health, & Sexuality journal.

Over the previous decade, a lot of research have discovered that hashish can enhance intimacy, assist individuals have intercourse extra usually, and make sexual experiences extra fulfillingparticularly for girls. The current examine confirms these findings, however provides a singular twist. In a lot of the prior stories, the vast majority of analysis topics have recognized as straight, however the present examine focuses completely on homosexual and bisexual topics.

Researchers from the University of British Columbia recruited 41 men between the ages of 15 and 30 from the Vancouver space and interviewed them about their experiences with hashish and intercourse. None of the themes recognized as straight: three of them recognized as trans, 36 as cisgender, and the opposite two didn’t establish with a particular gender. The researchers interviewed every topic for one to 2 hours between January and December of 2018.

Nearly each participant within the examine stated that utilizing hashish earlier than intercourse helped them really feel much less anxious throughout the expertise, reducing their inhibitions and permitting for elevated emotions of intimacy. Many topics additionally stated that weed helped them take care of anxiousness related to their very own bodily look, particularly associated to assembly new intercourse companions on hookup apps like Grindr or SCRUFF.

“In our study, we found that the use of cannabis can allow men to access a deeper sense of sexual freedom and intimacy in a context where same-sex sex is historically stigmatized,” the examine authors wrote in an article for The Conversation. “In other words, the sexualized use of cannabis can help sexual and gender minority men overcome feelings of anxiety and shame resulting from internalized homophobia, biphobia and/or transphobia, so that they can more fully enjoy the sex they want.”

These emotions of tension and disgrace can stop some homosexual, bisexual, or trans individuals from absolutely letting their guard down throughout intercourse, however a lot of the examine topics stated weed helped them overcome these emotions and change into extra intimate with their companions. One of the themes told researchers that he felt “a lot of guilt and shame” about discovering his sexual identification later in life, however stated that hashish helped him let go of those emotions throughout intercourse.

Some of the themes additionally reported that weed elevated their bodily enjoyment of intercourse and even helped some take pleasure in experiences that had beforehand not been fulfilling for them. “I’ve been having anal sex for, like, probably a decade, but until very, very, very recently while having an edible [i.e. ingesting cannabis], I’ve never actually liked it… It’s never been better than a six out of ten,” one topic advised the researchers, according to Insider.

“I’m really having fun with this for like the primary time, solidly, like a 9 out of ten [after taking the edible]!” the topic continued. “And then the following time I had intercourse with out an edible, I used to be having fun with it as an eight out of ten. I’m like, ‘Huh?!’ So it modified one thing in me.”

The findings of the examine are extraordinarily restricted, as researchers solely recruited a small variety of males from one particular geographical area. The examine does counsel that hashish may very well be a strong therapeutic instrument for serving to marginalized teams overcome sexual stigmas, nonetheless. 

The researchers imagine that hashish may assist affect individuals to have interaction in safer intercourse. The authors wrote that “the sexualized use of crystal methamphetamine (meth) by gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men in a practice often referred to as ‘chemsex’ or ‘party ‘n’ play’ has been identified as a key driver of HIV infection, depression, anxiety, and suicide.” Cannabis may enhance pleasure and cut back inhibitions throughout intercourse, although, and with none of the dangers related to meth, ecstasy, or different chemical compounds.

The authors additionally note that weed “can function as a kind of social lubricant and break down socially conditioned boundaries, enabling disinhibitions while still allowing people to stay safe and follow public health directives.” During the present COVID-19 pandemic, well being companies are urging individuals to show to on-line sexual experiences, quite than in-person encounters, and the authors imagine that pot may help make these digital classes extra fulfilling.

“Whether it’s because of a pandemic or due to harms associated with chemsex, the need to keep sexual and gender minority men safe remains vital,” the authors conclude.

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