Minority stress has been shown to negatively impact the mental health of sexual minorities and decreases same-sex relationship well-being. This dissertation examined the impact of minority stress on the mental and relational health of sexual minority individuals in same-sex relationships at the individual and couple level. The sample consisted of 280 participants, all of whom indicated they were currently in committed same-sex relationships and had seriously considered terminating their relationship at some point in the last six months. Data were analyzed using structural equation modeling with latent mediation and moderation. The first results of the first analysis showed that family rejection and nondisclosure were associated with increased uncertainty regarding one’s commitment to their relationship. Family rejection increased nondisclosure and decreased redemptive framing. Redemptive framing fully mediated the relationship between family rejection and uncertainty. Results of the second analysis indicated that social recognition can increase negative mental health symptoms through an increase in perceived constraint on the relationship. LGBT community connectedness moderated the relationship between social recognition and perceived constraint. At low levels of connection, recognition had some effect on constraint while high levels of connection resulted in a more substantial increase in constraint due to recognition. Clinical implications and future directions are discussed.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. August 2019. Major: Family Social Science. Advisor: Steven Harris. 1 computer file (PDF); viii, 117 pages.
Sexual Minority Stress, Resilience, and Intimate Relationships: An Examination of Individuals with Commitment Uncertainty.
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