Interpersonal Vulnerability and Its Association with Depressive Symptoms Among Gay and Heterosexual Men

Geva Shenkman, Kfir Ifrah, Dov Shmotkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The current study aimed to examine whether Israeli gay men reported higher interpersonal vulnerability in comparison with matched Israeli heterosexual men and to further assess the association between interpersonal vulnerability and depressive symptoms as a function of sexual orientation. Israeli gay men (N = 474) were individually matched with Israeli heterosexual men (N = 474) who completed measures of hostile-world scenario (HWS) in the interpersonal domain and depressive symptoms. Results indicated that gay men reported higher interpersonal vulnerability and higher depressive symptoms in comparison with heterosexual men. Also, a stronger positive association was found between interpersonal vulnerability and depressive symptoms among gay, in comparison with heterosexual, men. The findings may be explained in terms of minority stress, stigma, family and peer rejection, as well as discriminatory local policies regarding sexual minority rights, which serve as potential contributors to more interpersonal concerns and more depressive symptoms among gay, in comparison with heterosexual, men.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-208
Number of pages10
JournalSexuality Research and Social Policy
Volume17
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2020

Keywords

  • Depressive symptoms
  • Gay men
  • Hostile-world scenario
  • Interpersonal vulnerability
  • Sexual orientation

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