Introduction: While problems related to desire, arousal, and orgasm have been subject to extensive epidemiologic research, women's postcoital reactions and feelings, and postcoital dysphoria (PCD) remains under-researched.
Aim: The study examined the association between women's attachment anxiety and avoidance, differentiation of self, and the experience of PCD symptoms.
Methods: Two hundred and thirty female university students completed an online survey.
Main Outcome Measures: The Female Sexual Function Index, the Experiences in Close Relationships Scale, the Differentiation of Self Inventory-Revised, and study specific questions.
Results: Forty-six percent of respondents reported experiencing PCD symptoms at least once in their lifetime with 5.1% experiencing PCD symptoms a few times within the past 4 weeks. A small but significant inverse correlation was found between lifetime prevalence of PCD and sexual functioning (r = −0.16). While the regression model accounted for 22% of variance in lifetime prevalence of PCD, attachment and differentiation of self variables did not account for significant variance.
Conclusions: The findings confirm that PCD is under-recognized and under-researched. There appears to be no relationship between PCD and intimacy in close relationships. Further research is necessary to understand the subjective experience of PCD and to inform the development of a reliable measure.