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Homophobia: A negative lifestyle or mere “disagreement”?


Homophobia has been shown to have serious negative effects on society. Anti-gay activists claim that they do not like to be called “homophobic” because a disagreement doesn’t make them have a phobia. Does peer-reviewed science prove this?

Here are some recent studies:

Homophobia is Associated with Sexual Behavior that Increases Risk of Acquiring and Transmitting HIV Infection Among Black Men Who Have Sex with Men.

Find it here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22569942

Source

Epidemic Intelligence Service, Division of Applied Sciences, Scientific Education and Professional Development Program Office, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road MS E-37, Atlanta, GA, 30333, USA, wjeffries@cdc.gov.

Abstract

We investigated whether the experience of homophobic events increases the odds of engaging in unprotected anal intercourse (UAI) among blackmen who have sex with men (MSM) and whether social integration level buffered the association. Participants (N = 1,154) reported homophobic events experienced in the past 12 months. Social integration measures included social support, closeness with family members and friends, attachment to the black gay community, openness about sexuality within religious communities, and MSM social network size. Logistic regression analyses indicated that experiencing homophobia was associated with (1) UAI among men not previously diagnosed with HIV and (2) sexual HIV transmission risk behavior among men who knew they were HIV-infected. None of the social integration measures buffered these associations. Homophobia may promote acquisition and transmission of HIV infection among black MSM. Interventions are needed to reduce homophobia experienced by black MSM.

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Modeling the impact of social discrimination and financial hardship on the sexual risk of HIV among Latino and Black men who have sex with men.

Find it here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22401516

Source

Global Forum on Men Who Have Sex With Men & HIV, Oakland, CA 94612, USA. gayala@msmgf.org

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

We examined the impact of social discrimination and financial hardship on unprotected anal intercourse with a male sex partner of serodiscordant or unknown HIV status in the past 3 months among 1081 Latino and 1154 Black men who have sex with men (MSM; n = 2235) residing in Los Angeles County, California; New York, New York; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

METHODS:

We administered HIV testing and a questionnaire assessing 6 explanatory variables. We combined traditional mediation analysis with the results of a path analysis to simultaneously examine the direct, indirect, and total effects of these variables on the outcome variable.

RESULTS:

Bivariate analysis showed that homophobia, racism, financial hardship, and lack of social support were associated with unprotected anal intercourse with a serodiscordant or sero-unknown partner. Path analysis determined that these relations were mediated by participation in risky sexual situations and lack of social support. However, paths between the explanatory variable and 2 mediating variables varied by participants’ serostatus.

CONCLUSIONS:

Future prevention research and program designs should specifically address the differential impact of social discrimination and financial hardship on lack of social support and risky sexual situations among Latino and Black MSM.
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Homophobia and racism experienced by Latino men who have sex with men in the United States: correlates of exposure and associations with HIV risk behaviors.

Find it here:  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21630014

Source

Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road, NE Mail Stop E37, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA. ymizuno@cdc.gov

Abstract

Using cross-sectional data collected from 1081 Latino men who have sex with men (MSM) recruited with respondent-driven sampling (RDS) techniques from Los Angeles and New York, we examined the extent to which Latino MSM reported exposure to social discrimination (i.e., experienced both homophobia and racism, homophobia only, racism only, or neither homophobia nor racism). More than 40% of respondents experienced both homophobia and racism in the past 12 months. Los Angeles participants, those with lower income, and those who reported being HIV-positive were more likely to report experiencing both types of social discrimination. Adjusting for potential confounders, men exposed to both homophobia and racism were more likely than men exposed to neither form of discrimination to report unprotected receptive anal intercourse with a casual sex partner (AOR = 1.92, 95% CI, 1.18-3.24) and binge drinking (AOR = 1.42, 95% CI, 1.02-1.98). Our findings suggest the presence of a syndemic of adverse social experiences and call for more intervention research to address both homophobia and racism experienced among LatinoMSM in the United States.
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Family rejection as a predictor of negative health outcomes in white and Latino lesbian, gay, and bisexual young adults.

 Find it here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19117902

Source

Adolescent Health Initiatives, César E. Chávez Institute, College of Ethnic Studies, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA 94103, USA. caitlin@sfsu.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We examined specific family rejecting reactions to sexual orientation and gender expression during adolescence as predictors of current health problems in a sample of lesbian, gay, and bisexual young adults.

METHODS:

On the basis of previously collected in-depth interviews, we developed quantitative scales to assess retrospectively in young adults the frequency of parental and caregiver reactions to a lesbian, gay, or bisexual sexual orientation during adolescence. Our survey instrument also included measures of 9 negative health indicators, including mental health, substance abuse, and sexual risk. The survey was administered to a sample of 224 white and Latino self-identified lesbian, gay, and bisexual young adults, aged 21 to 25, recruited through diverse venues and organizations. Participants completed self-report questionnaires by using either computer-assisted or pencil-and-paper surveys.

RESULTS:

Higher rates of family rejection were significantly associated with poorer health outcomes. On the basis of odds ratios, lesbian, gay, and bisexual young adults who reported higher levels of family rejection during adolescence were 8.4 times more likely to report having attempted suicide, 5.9 times more likely to report high levels of depression, 3.4 times more likely to use illegal drugs, and 3.4 times more likely to report having engaged in unprotected sexual intercourse compared with peers from families that reported no or low levels of family rejection. Latino men reported the highest number of negative family reactions to their sexual orientation in adolescence.

CONCLUSIONS:

This study establishes a clear link between specific parental and caregiver rejecting behaviors and negative health problems in young lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults. Providers who serve this population should assess and help educate families about the impact of rejecting behaviors. Counseling families, providing anticipatory guidance, and referring families for counseling and support can help make a critical difference in helping decrease risk and increasing well-being for lesbian, gay, and bisexual youth.

The impact of HIV and high-risk behaviours on the wives of married men who have sex with men and injection drug users: implications for HIV prevention

Abstract

Background

HIV/AIDS in India disproportionately affects women, not by their own risks, but by those of their partners, generally their spouses. We address two marginalized populations at elevated risk of acquiring HIV: women who are married to men who also have sex with men (MSM) and wives of injection drug users (IDUs).

Methods

We used a combination of focus groups (qualitative) and structured surveys (quantitative) to identify the risks that high-risk men pose to their low-risk wives and/or sexual partners. Married MSM were identified using respondent-driven recruitment in Tamil Nadu, India, and were interviewed by trainer assessors. A sample of wives of injection drug users in Chennai were recruited from men enrolled in a cohort study of the epidemiology of drug use among IDUs in Chennai, and completed a face-to-face survey. Focus groups were held with all groups of study participants, and the outcomes transcribed and analyzed for major themes on family, HIV and issues related to stigma, discrimination and disclosure.

Results

Using mixed-methods research, married MSM are shown to not disclose their sexual practices to their wives, whether due to internalized homophobia, fear of stigma and discrimination, personal embarrassment or changing sexual mores. Married MSM in India largely follow the prevailing norm of marriage to the opposite sex and having a child to satisfy social pressuresMale IDUs cannot hide their drug use as easily as married MSM, but they also avoid disclosure. The majority of their wives learn of their drug-using behaviour only after they are married, making them generally helpless to protect themselves. Fear of poverty and negative influences on children were the major impacts associated with continuing drug use.

Conclusions

We propose a research and prevention agenda to address the HIV risks encountered by families of high-risk men in the Indian and other low- and middle-income country contexts.
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Other things the full above study said:

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– “The prevalence of HIV and associated STIs among married MSM was high (HIV = 13.4%; HSV2 = 32.4%;syphilis = 11.3%). HIV prevalence among married MSM was largely explained by higher risk behaviours among married MSM, including having a greater number of male partners and not reporting a primary male partner “
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– “Most (95%) married MSM self-identified as bisexual. While nearly all (97%) had disclosed their same-sex behaviour to other MSM, virtually none had disclosed their behaviour to their wives (2%), other family members (6%), and health care professionals (15%). Nearly half (51%) had been previously tested for HIV, but only 63 had received an HIV test in the prior six months, suggesting a low frequency of regular testing. Further, only four of the 33 HIV-positive married MSM were aware of their status at the time of our survey.”
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– “The qualitative data provide insight into some of the reasons for the high rates of reported risk behaviours reported by married MSM. Stigma and discrimination were identified as their biggest concerns; most participants reported fear that their families would not accept their sexuality as one of their biggest barriers to disclosure of their sexual preferences.
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– “Married MSM also reported that their inability to discuss their sexuality with their children was a constant worry. In terms of substance use, smoking marijuana and alcohol use were nearly universal; the primary reason for alcohol use was personal frustration. The primary barrier to regular HIV testing was fear related to exposure of their HIV status and/or sexual practices. We also asked men in the focus groups about the high prevalence of HIV among married MSM. Men suggested that those who were married had to be more secretive about their behaviours and tended towards high-risk and multiple partnerships.”
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– “Social pressures in India lead many MSM to marry and have children despite their sexual preference for men.   This forced duplicity drives many of these men underground and leads them to high-risk behaviours, putting them and their families at high risk for HIV and associated infections. “
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