’Fifty Shades of Grey’ readers more likely to have abusive partners

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Scientists have warned that reading the erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey may be bad for the health of young females.

After the overwhelming success of E.L. James’ erotica series ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, a study has issued a report stating that readers of the novels are more at risk of having abusive partners.

A study which was published in the Journal of Women’s Health, indicated that out of the 655 women aged between 18 and 24 who participated in the poll, around 25% of those who had read ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ were found more likely to have been involved in an abusive relationship.

The study, ‘Fiction or Not? Fifty Shades Is Associated with health Risks in Adolescent and Young Adult Females’, found that 219 participants had read the first book in the trilogy. When they were questioned about their romantic partnerships, the survey indicated that 25% of them were likely to have been in a relationship with a partner who swore, yelled or shouted at them.

The study does not show if the abusive relationship occurred prior to or after the female had read the novel. However, the author of the research and professor at Michigan State University, Amy Bonomi, said that there is a link between the books and the history of abuse of the participants in the study.

She said that the lead female, Anastasia Steele, is a typical example of female use and the book is glamorising violence against women.

Bonomi said that the main female character starts to manage her behaviour in a bid to keep the peace in the relationship and this type of behaviour is often seen in abused women. As time passes, Steele loses her identity and she becomes entrapped and disempowered.

Although James has claimed that the series of books was written as a ‘fun’ read for females, Bonomi criticised the author for projecting the unhealthy romance as a loving relationship. She said that Christian and Anastasia’s relationship may have been cast as being sexually liberating for females, it is in fact entrapping them further because of the abuse which is maintained throughout the book.

The study also revealed that more than 60% of participants who admitted that they had read all three novels in the series had ‘five or more’ sexual partners during their lifetime; 65% stated that they binge drink at times and 75% said they had fasted during the past 24 hours or made use of diet aids.

Image Credit: Becky Hood

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