In the workplace, the results can be just as disastrous, if not more so.
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To measure well-being, we asked participants to rate their self-esteem, degree of life satisfaction, general sense of positive functioning (“psychological well-being”), and feelings of self-actualization (“eudaimonic” well-being).
To tap into feelings of psychological despair, we asked participants to report on feelings of depression, general anxiety, and social anxiety.
On the positive side, due to the large size of our sample, we were better able than other researchers to institute statistical controls, particularly in terms of the inevitable errors that occur when measuring these sensitive psychological constructs.
The only way to begin to tease out directionality in the casual sex/mental health conundrum is by conducting longitudinal studies, though even those will not be perfect.
Alternatively, the difference could reflect differing socialization influences affecting degree of comfort with admitting to hookup encounters.