Not Always a Straight Path: College Students’ Narratives of Heterosexual Identity Development

Not Always a Straight Path: College Students’ Narratives of Heterosexual Identity Development Research has recently begun to examine heterosexual identity development, providing preliminary evidence of variation within a sexual identity category that has frequently been conceptualized as uniform and unremarkable. The current study sought to classify and describe young adult participants’ narratives on their heterosexual identity development using Worthington et al. (2002) heterosexual identity status model. Participants included 1,051 heterosexually-identified undergraduates (632 women; 419 men) from two public universities in the western United States who provided written narratives about their sexual identity development. Responses were analyzed for levels of identity exploration and commitment, which were used to create five identity status categories. The majority of participants described identity commitment with passive exploration, with more men in this category than women. A significant subset of participants described identity commitment with active exploration, with more women in this category than men. Smaller numbers of participants described active exploration without commitment, unexplored commitment, and identity diffusion. More women were in the active exploration without commitment status than men; no gender differences emerged in the other two statuses. Participants classified into statuses with active exploration and higher commitment also evidenced higher scores on quantitative measures of sexual identity exploration and commitment, respectively. Men evidenced higher quantitative scores than women on identity commitment; there were no gender differences in the quantitative assessment of identity exploration. Findings support the existence of variations and systematic gender-based differences in young adults’ heterosexual identity development. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

Not Always a Straight Path: College Students’ Narratives of Heterosexual Identity Development

Loading next page...
 
/lp/springer_journal/not-always-a-straight-path-college-students-narratives-of-heterosexual-FqtKX0JyjR
Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Medicine/Public Health, general; Sociology, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11199-011-0068-4
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Research has recently begun to examine heterosexual identity development, providing preliminary evidence of variation within a sexual identity category that has frequently been conceptualized as uniform and unremarkable. The current study sought to classify and describe young adult participants’ narratives on their heterosexual identity development using Worthington et al. (2002) heterosexual identity status model. Participants included 1,051 heterosexually-identified undergraduates (632 women; 419 men) from two public universities in the western United States who provided written narratives about their sexual identity development. Responses were analyzed for levels of identity exploration and commitment, which were used to create five identity status categories. The majority of participants described identity commitment with passive exploration, with more men in this category than women. A significant subset of participants described identity commitment with active exploration, with more women in this category than men. Smaller numbers of participants described active exploration without commitment, unexplored commitment, and identity diffusion. More women were in the active exploration without commitment status than men; no gender differences emerged in the other two statuses. Participants classified into statuses with active exploration and higher commitment also evidenced higher scores on quantitative measures of sexual identity exploration and commitment, respectively. Men evidenced higher quantitative scores than women on identity commitment; there were no gender differences in the quantitative assessment of identity exploration. Findings support the existence of variations and systematic gender-based differences in young adults’ heterosexual identity development.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Sep 11, 2011

References

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create lists to
organize your research

Export lists, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off