Abstract Title

Gender Differences in Body Surveillance: Relationships Between Sexually- and Relationship-Based Contingent Self Esteem

Additional Funding Sources

Funding for the project was provided through the College of Western Idaho.

Abstract

Self-objectification is often studied in women but rarely in men. Previous research has suggested that self-objectification might play a causal role in the development of contingent self-esteem (Barzoki, et al. 2018). There are several different subtypes of contingent self-esteem, including relation based and sexual contingent. This study explored the relationship between both relation based and sexual contingent self-esteem in relation to self-objectification, comparing the results for men and women. A survey was completed by 376 students (24.5% male & 55.9% female) ranging in age from 18 to 54 years old. The students were recruited from the College of Western Idaho and Boise State University. Women displayed greater levels of both body shame and body surveillance, but there were no gender differences in the control aspect of self-objectification. Body surveillance significantly correlated with all sexual contingent and relation based aspects of contingent self-esteem in both men and women. In men, body shame and control correlated with all aspects of relation based self-esteem but only correlated with negative sexual events and not positive sexual events of sexual contingent self-esteem. Whereas in women, all variables were significantly correlated with body shame. However, control was not significantly correlated with contingent upon love or positive sexual events. Self-objectification and contingent self-esteem, though mostly studied in women, is present in both men and women. Significant differences were found in the relationship between types of contingent self-esteem and self-objectification in men and women. More research needs to be done to further our understanding of these differences.

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Gender Differences in Body Surveillance: Relationships Between Sexually- and Relationship-Based Contingent Self Esteem

Self-objectification is often studied in women but rarely in men. Previous research has suggested that self-objectification might play a causal role in the development of contingent self-esteem (Barzoki, et al. 2018). There are several different subtypes of contingent self-esteem, including relation based and sexual contingent. This study explored the relationship between both relation based and sexual contingent self-esteem in relation to self-objectification, comparing the results for men and women. A survey was completed by 376 students (24.5% male & 55.9% female) ranging in age from 18 to 54 years old. The students were recruited from the College of Western Idaho and Boise State University. Women displayed greater levels of both body shame and body surveillance, but there were no gender differences in the control aspect of self-objectification. Body surveillance significantly correlated with all sexual contingent and relation based aspects of contingent self-esteem in both men and women. In men, body shame and control correlated with all aspects of relation based self-esteem but only correlated with negative sexual events and not positive sexual events of sexual contingent self-esteem. Whereas in women, all variables were significantly correlated with body shame. However, control was not significantly correlated with contingent upon love or positive sexual events. Self-objectification and contingent self-esteem, though mostly studied in women, is present in both men and women. Significant differences were found in the relationship between types of contingent self-esteem and self-objectification in men and women. More research needs to be done to further our understanding of these differences.