The relations between self-warmth, self-coldness, internalized heterosexism, and depressive symptoms among sexual minority men: A moderated-mediation model

Alexander J. Ristvej, Suzanne McLaren, Peter D. Goldie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Depression is a prevalent mental health issue for sexual minority men (SMM), with the internalization of sexual identity-based stigma a key risk factor. Self-warmth is a protective factor and self-coldness is a risk factor for depressive symptoms, yet limited research in this area has focused on SMM. In the present study, an international sample of 1,285 gay and 487 bisexual men completed measures of depression, internalized heterosexism, and self-warmth/self-coldness. A multiple linear regression showed that internalized heterosexism explained 0.4% unique variance, self-warmth explained 0.5% unique variance, and self-coldness explained 18.8% unique variance in depressive symptoms. Self-warmth was directly and indirectly related to lower levels of depressive symptoms among SMM. In contrast, self-coldness was directly related to higher levels of depressive symptoms among SMM, and indirectly related to higher levels of depressive symptoms only for gay men. Findings should inform work aiming primarily to reduce self-coldness among SMM, thereby reducing depressive symptoms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2478-2502
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Homosexuality
Volume71
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

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