Postmodernist culture produces conditions conducive to the development of various forms of mental dysfunctions that in the last decades had widely spread in the population. They include the disorders which are not as strongly expressed as to diagnosed as symptoms or syndromes of formal mental pathology (Korolenko, 2009).

In the previous monograph (Korolenko, Dmitrieva, 2009) the authors had proposed to not label these dysfunctions by the term of “mental disorders”, as this term unavoidably carries a negative impact and can lead to the stigmatization linked with the direct association with the image of the mental illness. The two alternative terms were introduced, “harmful mental organization and “shadow syndromes” of mental disorders.

The sexual disorders (dysfunctions and deviances) were not included among the analyzed disturbances. The sexual desire and love are, on the one hand, hormone driven implanted by the nature instinctual forces, on the other hand, they have profound interpersonal and spiritual dimension.

Sexual disturbances are connected with complex, multifaceted, and in many cases controversial sides of the problem that needs special consideration.

Some aspects of the influence of the cultural factors and associated with them mythological beliefs were considered by us (Korolenko) in the monograph “Mythology of Sex” (1993). However, radical changes happened in the Russian society since this publication. USSR, with its economy based on the socialist model, broke apart. Recent changes in Russia are characterized by the appearance of the elements of postmodern society. This process is especially rapid in the big towns and cities. Postmodern culture with its typical inconsistency, fluidity, “no time” phenomenon, superficiality of the interpersonal contacts and relationships, alienation from Nature, from emotional social support, and from the individual’s self leads to the serious changes of sexual functioning that is particularly sensitive to psychological and social stresses.

Sexual dysfunctions appear in many forms on the base of the non?cohesive (diffuse) identity. They develop as the result of the influence of psycho? biologically inadequate upbringing. The significance of the early infancy period is becoming increasingly clear. Most typical for postmodern culture is the distortion of the psycho?biologically necessary emotional mutual link between parents and children, and especially insufficient symbiotic communication between the mother and the infant. Overburdened with professional and home problems, the mother reveals often the signs of workaholism, and burnout syndrome. In such conditions the mother can not, even if she sincerely wants it to transfer to the child the feelings of her love and care; the condition of emotional symbiotic certainty in infant does not develop. As a result, the infant can not form satisfactorily the feeling of emotional safety and security. In many cases in

postmodern families even physical contact of the infant with the mother are limited. However, an unlimited physical contact of the infant with the mother, by itself, is not sufficient for the infant’s normal psychological growth. While being physically close to the infant, the postmodern mother in a state of emotional tension or exhaustion is often psychologically alienated. The infant on the empathic level perceives this emotional state of mother as the sign of an abandonment and the survival’s threat.

The children in postmodern society in general experience from the earliest period the state of emotional deprivation that leads to the delay in the cohesive identity formation. The transient objects, soft toys, blankets, DVD stimulate in many ways the mental development of the infant and the child but are insufficient for the normal growth of her/his psyche. Disturbance of the basic sense of self (“ipseity disturbance”) may underlie the social cognitive and emotion difficulties apparent in variety of personal and other forms of mental disorders.

Social cognition involves the perception, interpretation, and processing of social information. Capacity to represent another person’s thoughts, beliefs or intentions may be significantly damaged. Emotion disturbance involves affect recognition and capacity to represent another person’s feeling mental states

Postmodern children are very often overload with information but alienated from parents and from their own subjectivity. Following problems of the formation of mature sexuality and possibility for deeper love are centered on the undeveloped feeling of intimacy that make impossible healthy sexual and emotional relationships and understanding in the period of the adulthood.

Modern psychoanalysis, in contrast to the traditional one, does not focus on the role of drives and their repression to the unconsciousness but on the “basic fault” (M.Balint, 1994), a deficit of the psyche that had formed as the result of the inadequate upbringing in the preverbal (preoedipal) period of the development. The persons with such deficient mental structure are suffering from the chronic feeling of inner uncertainty, they do not sense themselves existentially. The integrity and the wholeness of the person is distorted, and the perception of the outer reality is changed and weakened. The fits of the loss of the identity with the alienation from the outer world are typical, everything is perceived as in a dream, or as very odd. Emotional instability with unexpected shifts of the mood occurs under the impact of outer evenrs but often is caused by the influence of hidden unconscious contents, imagination, and fantasies. Indiscernible by others, very weak stimuli are able to provoke strong emotional reactions that are usually misunderstood by others.

In the postmodern society the set of mainly unarticulated unconscious, mythological beliefs about gender differences is preserved. These beliefs form the gender models or schemas that affect the evaluation about the behaviors and the

performances of girls and boys, men and women in professional and family life.

This way many intuitive consciously uncontrolled prejudices of gender differences are formed. Gender models operate with an imagination about masculine and feminine traits. In some points they can be accurate, but in most cases gender models oversimplify multidimensionality of gender differences which are very typical for postmodern culture. The simplification of the gender perception distorts meaning ful connections, perpetuates insensitivity, inequality and inequity, forms relations of domination and submission when men view women as sexual objects rather than full?fledged human beings. Under the influence of these gender schemas it’s difficult to experience the caring love connection that gives the sexual relationships a sense of well?being and togetherness. Negative emotions of tension, mistrust, anxiety, fear, guilt, shame and anger disturb the existential pleasure.

The sexual liberalism of the postmodern culture objectively stimulates the link of sexual pleasure with pain , aggressiveness, and humiliation; elements of this culture, as a matter of fact, inhibit healthy sexuality, negate spiritual side of human passion, and poison meaningful sexual relationships.

Postmodern culture has created an environment, where sex is pushed upon the population literally from every angle. It is present on TV, on the internet, on the billboards, in the movies, glamour magazines, virtually everywhere appear sexual images. The pressure of erotic information takes away sexual intimacy. It warps an individual’s perception what a healthy sexual relationship is like.

The gender aspects and various sexual role deviances, postmodern sexual fluidity and flexibility, lesbianism, homosexuality, bisexuality, and polyamory are described in the contents of the presented publication.

Researchers are just beginning to study the postmodernist phenomenon of polyamory. This new label is attributed to the philosophy and practice of loving more than one person at the same time, to the relationships with multiple, mutually consenting partners (Bennett, 2009).

According to the author openly polyamorous families in the United States number more than half million, with thriving contingents in nearly every major city. Polyamorists practice informal group marriage, many of them are bisexual. Postmodern phenomenon of polyamory shakes up the world of many people, scares them, causes additional chaos in their psyche.

The absence of the personality wholeness expresses itself by mental disorders and precipitates to the development of disturbances that sometimes achieve even a psychotic level (depression, psychotic anxiety, severe forms of dissociation disorder). Diffuse identity can lead also to the increased risk of the development of personality disorders, especially borderline, narcissistic, and

antisocial. However, in most cases only shadow forms of these disorders develop. The conducive conditions for the formation of varios forms of addictive behavior, with an escape from the emptiness the chaos of an inner mental life through the change of the mental state, occur very often, in fact, as a matter of choice.

Nowadays, sexual addiction, sexual co?addiction, pornography addiction simultaneously with others so called process addictions (pathological gambling, internet addiction, addictive overeating and starving) become growing and extremely serious social and psychological problem, probably more significant than traditionally emphasized chemical addictions.

The dramatic interest to the variety of the sexual addictive behavior and to the other sexual disturbances is linked partially with the spread of the AIDS. The usage of Viagra (sildenatril citrate) during 1990s for the treatment of erection disorder and connected with it psychological problems changed significantly the borders of therapeutic possibilities and the hopes. However, the understanding that Viagra by itself can not treat basic problems of sexuality is growing. Viagra can not correct mythology and false beliefs, the drug does not have the magic force to improve many negative experiences associated with mutual partners’ misunderstanding and broken relationships; it does not prevent sexual aggression and does not treat its consequences.

The topic of sexual violence is specially emphasized in this book. The victims of sexual violence are more often women, and this side of the problem is widely discussed in mass media and professional works. However, the other side that concerns women’s aggression, as yet, is not sufficiently presented. The predominant public belief is that young girls and females are mostly immune with the respect of perpetrating acts of sexual violence, and the sexual abuse of children is extremely rare.

Unfortunately. postmodern reality shows that young girls and females become also often sexual predators. According to the data of American Bureau of Justice Statistics sexual offenses by females increased by nearly 11 percentage between 1985 and 1994 (Morris,2008). Author notes that nearly 30 percentage of juvenile offenders is female. In the connection with these and other data the problem of female sexual violence is included and analyzed in the presented publication. The demonstration of female sexuality mixed with deadly violence was expressed in popular film “Basic Instinct”. The main character, with rather suggestive name Catherine Trammell, is beautiful, very seductive woman. She is bisexual, rich, and extremely dangerous. She has a proclivity for biding her seduced lovers, and murdering them with an ice pick during sexual intercourse.

The separate chapter of the book concerns the emotions of envy and jealousy that are often involved in the structure and the dynamic of sexual disorders. Envy and jealousy, as yet, were not sufficiently studied in traditional

psychiatry. The analysis and even the description of the envy in the textbooks of psychiatry is absent and most of the psychiatrist do not have of this emotion the necessary knowledge (according to our data, the classical work of Melanie Klein “Envy and Gratitude”, as psychoanalytical, is usually unknown or regarded as “unscientific”). Jealousy is described rather superficially, predominantly in the frame of the element of psychotic states (delusion of jealousy) or syndrome of overvalued ideas of jealousy. In this situation new information on envy and jealousy may be especially useful.

In DSM?IV?TR (2000), sexual disorders are divided on sexual dysfunctions and sexual deviances. Sexual dysfunctions include nine diagnostic categories: hypoactive sexual disorder, male erectile disorder, female sexual arousal disorder, female orgasmic disorder, male orgasmic disorder, premature ejaculation, dyspareunia, and vaginismus. Sexual dysfunctions may be generalized, they may occur across all sexual situations and partners, or appear only in special circumstances, limited to the contact with specific partners. Sexual deviances (praphilias) are characterized by the intensity and the recurrence of sexual urges and fantasies that include inhuman objects (fetishism), and the experiences of the humiliation of self or his/her partner, pedophilia, exhibitionism, and frotterism.

Presented monograph is not the textbook of sexual disorders and it does not maintain the description of all registered in the DSM?IV?TR entities. The basic attention is focused on the relatively unknown, including absent in DSM?IV?TR, typical for the postmodern society sexual disorders that have the tendency to the growth in contemporary Russia. The forms of deviant behavior in whose roots the disorder of the “basic instinct” is very significant are described.

Authors hope that presented information and its analysis will be interesting and useful both for the professional sexologists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and to the more wide circle of the readers.

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Источник: Ц.П.Короленко, Н.В.Дмитриева. СЕКСУАЛЬНОСТЬ В ПОСТСОВРЕМЕННОМ МИРЕ. 2011

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