Trajectories of Internalized Heterosexism among Young Men Who have Sex with Men

Trajectories of Internalized Heterosexism among Young Men Who have Sex with Men Minority stress, or the unique stressors encountered by sexual minorities, has a significant impact on the mental health and well-being of this population. One minority stressor, internalized heterosexism, refers to incorporating stigma against sexual minorities into one’s self-concept as a product of social bias. This minority stressor has been consistently related to worse mental health in sexual minorities. We evaluated experiences of internalized heterosexism longitudinally, over 24 months, in a sample of 450 young men who have sex with men (YMSM; age range = 16–20 years old at baseline). Latent class growth analyses revealed three classes: individuals with low-decreasing internalized heterosexism (57.1%), medium-stable internalized heterosexism (37.3%), and high-stable internalized heterosexism (5.6%). Multinomial logistic regression analyses revealed that some racial/ethnic minorities, non-gay identified individuals (i.e., bisexual/other), and individuals with less femininity and greater masculinity were significantly more likely to be in the medium- and high-stable internalized heterosexism classes. Higher victimization, as well as lower gay/bisexual community involvement, peer support, and outness predicted membership in the medium-stable internalized heterosexism class (relative to the low-decreasing class). Further, higher past 6-month victimization and lower outness were also predictive of high-stable internalized heterosexism class membership (relative to the low-decreasing class). These findings reveal that there is not a single trajectory of internalized heterosexism—the degree to which it changes differs across men and depends on demographic characteristics and interpersonal experiences. Furthermore, the results indicate interpersonal targets for future work aimed at promoting positive identity development and decreased internalized heterosexism for sexual minority youth. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Youth and Adolescence Springer Journals

Trajectories of Internalized Heterosexism among Young Men Who have Sex with Men

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2017 by Springer Science+Business Media New York
Subject
Psychology; Child and School Psychology; Clinical Psychology; Health Psychology; Law and Psychology; History of Psychology; Psychology, general
ISSN
0047-2891
eISSN
1573-6601
D.O.I.
10.1007/s10964-017-0670-z
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Minority stress, or the unique stressors encountered by sexual minorities, has a significant impact on the mental health and well-being of this population. One minority stressor, internalized heterosexism, refers to incorporating stigma against sexual minorities into one’s self-concept as a product of social bias. This minority stressor has been consistently related to worse mental health in sexual minorities. We evaluated experiences of internalized heterosexism longitudinally, over 24 months, in a sample of 450 young men who have sex with men (YMSM; age range = 16–20 years old at baseline). Latent class growth analyses revealed three classes: individuals with low-decreasing internalized heterosexism (57.1%), medium-stable internalized heterosexism (37.3%), and high-stable internalized heterosexism (5.6%). Multinomial logistic regression analyses revealed that some racial/ethnic minorities, non-gay identified individuals (i.e., bisexual/other), and individuals with less femininity and greater masculinity were significantly more likely to be in the medium- and high-stable internalized heterosexism classes. Higher victimization, as well as lower gay/bisexual community involvement, peer support, and outness predicted membership in the medium-stable internalized heterosexism class (relative to the low-decreasing class). Further, higher past 6-month victimization and lower outness were also predictive of high-stable internalized heterosexism class membership (relative to the low-decreasing class). These findings reveal that there is not a single trajectory of internalized heterosexism—the degree to which it changes differs across men and depends on demographic characteristics and interpersonal experiences. Furthermore, the results indicate interpersonal targets for future work aimed at promoting positive identity development and decreased internalized heterosexism for sexual minority youth.

Journal

Journal of Youth and AdolescenceSpringer Journals

Published: Apr 9, 2017

References

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