Disclosure of Sexual Orientation, Victimization, and Mental Health Among Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Older Adults

Anthony R. D'augelli, Arnold H. Grossman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This study examined the lifetime victimization based on sexual orientation of 416 lesbian, gay, or bisexual (LGB) older adults aged 60 or older. Participants reported the ages at which they were aware of their sexual orientation, self-identified as LGB, and first disclosed their sexual orientation to anyone. Frequencies of nine kinds of verbal and physical victimization were obtained. Nearly three quarters reported some kind of sexual orientation victimization. Men reported more overall victimization than women. The more open participants were about their sexual orientation and the less time they spent before disclosing their sexual orientation, the more victimization they reported. Physical victimization was associated with earlier achievement of sexual orientation milestones and more time being open about one's sexual orientation. Participants who had been physically attacked reported lower self-esteem, more loneliness, and poorer mental health than others. More suicide attempts were reported among those older adults who were physically attacked.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1008-1027
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Interpersonal Violence
Volume16
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology

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