Sexual orientation concealment, hope, and depressive symptoms among sexual minority women: The moderating role of sexual orientation

Sophie Anne Glynn, Suzanne McLaren, Peter D. Goldie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Sexual minority women (SMW) experience higher levels of depression compared to heterosexual women, and bisexual women show higher levels than lesbian women. Sexual orientation concealment is a risk factor for depressive symptoms among SMW. Hope is protective against depressive symptoms in diverse samples, but limited research in this area has centered on SMW. This study examined the role of hope and its components, agency and pathways, as moderators of the relation between sexual orientation concealment and depressive symptoms, and whether the moderating effects were conditional on sexual orientation. An international sample of 218 lesbian women aged 18 to 69 (M = 32.93 years, SD = 12.75) and 230 bisexual women aged 18 to 67 (M = 27.83 years, SD = 7.52) completed an online survey. Hope, agency, and pathways did not moderate the relation between sexual orientation concealment and depressive symptoms. The significant negative relations between hope and depressive symptoms, and between agency and depressive symptoms, were moderated by sexual orientation: the relations were stronger among lesbian women than bisexual women. Results suggest that increasing levels of hope and agency through clinical intervention may reduce depressive symptoms for both groups of women, with more pronounced effects among lesbian women.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Homosexuality
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Sexual orientation concealment, hope, and depressive symptoms among sexual minority women: The moderating role of sexual orientation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this