Science takes close look at issue of size and self-esteem

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

SYDNEY -- We know for certain there’s a link between penis size and how men think they measure up against each other.

If there weren’t a clear correlation, e-mail inboxes wouldn’t be stuffed with offers for penis enlargements and stand-up comedians wouldn’t make such a big thing of endowment.

Researchers at Melbourne’s Victoria University are now taking a clinical look at what seems like the blindingly obvious.

“We want to know whether men who report satisfaction with their penis size may have higher self-esteem and better body image than men who are dissatisfied with the size of their penis,” psychologist Gerard Kennedy said. “If men believe that a large penis size is the cultural ideal then this could affect how they perceive their general physical attractiveness.”

Kennedy and his team are well on the way to garnering 500 blokes prepared to fill in a multiple-choice questionnaire and measure their manhood.

Kennedy predicts that men worried about size will have low self- esteem and that this group will be disproportionately represented among those who look to Internet dating rather than making face-to- face contact.

“Given that first impressions during dating situations are largely dependent on physical attractiveness, individuals with low physical self-esteem may find it easier to use the internet for dating and socializing purposes,” he said.

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