Experiences of homophobia among gay and bisexual men: results from a cross-sectional study in seven countries

Anna N. Chard, Catherine Finneran, Patrick S. Sullivan, Rob Stephenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Experiences of homophobic discrimination are associated with an increased prevalence of psychological disorders and increased odds of reporting suicidal ideation among gay and bisexual men. We examine two domains of homophobia – external homophobic discrimination and internalised homophobia – and their associations with sexual orientation, demographic characteristics, relationships and social support among a sample of gay and bisexual men from seven countries. Sexually active gay and bisexual men aged over 18 and residing in Australia, Brazil, Canada, South Africa, Thailand, the UK and the USA were recruited through banner advertisements on Facebook. Two outcomes were examined: reporting experiences of homophobic discrimination and reporting feelings of internalised homophobia. No covariates were consistently significantly associated with experiencing external homophobic discrimination across countries. Across all countries, bisexually identifying respondents reported significantly greater feelings of internalised homophobia. Respondents in Brazil and the UK reporting a main partner, and respondents in Australia, Brazil, Canada, South Africa, Thailand and the USA reporting a larger gay/bisexual social network, reported significantly fewer feelings of internalised homophobia. Results suggest an ameliorative effect of social networks on experiencing homophobia. Additional research should focus on the mechanisms through which social networks reduce feelings of internalised homophobia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1174-1189
Number of pages16
JournalCulture, Health and Sexuality
Issue number10
StatePublished - Nov 26 2015


  • gay/bisexual men
  • homophobia
  • minority stress
  • social support


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