Serious researchers studied how sex is different when you’re high vs. when you’re drunk

From The Washington Post:

Marijuana is going mainstream. Attitudes toward the drug are changing, rules governing its use are shifting and more and more states are voting to legalize it.

With widespread acceptance will come, theoretically, more widespread use. And that raises a whole lot of interesting questions for public health researchers. How will legal marijuana affect our children? Our jobs? Our relationships?

Or how about our sex lives?

That latter question inspired a research project by Joseph Palamar and his colleagues at New York University. “Since the landscape is changing, and marijuana continues to increase in popularity, research is needed to continue to examine if and how marijuana use may influence risk for unsafe sexual behavior,” they write in the July issue of the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior.

To that end, Palamar and his colleagues recruited 24 heterosexual adults to take part in a series of in-depth interviews about prior sexual experiences that happened under the influence of either alcohol or marijuana. This isn’t a national sample by any means, and it’s not meant to be. Rather, the purpose was to obtain a rigorous qualitative assessment of the different effects of alcohol and marijuana on people’s sexual behaviors and to use this as a jumping-off point for future quantitative research.

Here are a few of the observations the researchers drew from the interviews.

1. Beer goggles are real.

Respondents “overwhelmingly reported that alcohol use was more likely to (negatively) affect the partners they chose,” the study found. Both men and women were fairly likely to say that alcohol had the effect of lowering their standards for who they slept with, in terms of character and appearance. With marijuana, this seemed to be much less of an issue.

“With weed I know who I’m waking up with. With drinking, you don’t know. Once you …

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