SEXUALITY AND STIGMA: CULTURE, IDENTITY, AND MENTAL HEALTH AMONG HIGH-RISK MEN WHO HAVE SEX WITH MEN
JULY 28, 2020
12:30 P.M. – 2:00 P.M. EDT
ABOUT THE PRESENTATION
Globally, gay and bisexual men (GBM) face great health risks as well as social challenges due to the stigma associated with their sexual orientation and/or identity. The global literature reveals that stigmatization directed towards GBM result in minority stress with detrimental effects on their mental and sexual health, including anxiety, depression and/or suicide ideation or attempts, often coupled with substance abuse, alcohol misuse, and risky sexual practices in a syndemic manner. These phenomena are further magnified for GBM who sex sell to other men.
Nonetheless, the global literature shows that individual resilience is an important protective factor against minority stress, and the need for resilience-building interventions targeting GBM is well recognized. Resilience is recognized as an important protective factor against minority stress.
This talk will cover a program of research on the sexual health among men who sell sex to other men in two countries: China and Tajikistan. The focus will be on how cultural mores (e.g., religion) and norms (e.g., gender role) as well as expectations associated with manhood (e.g., having a family) shape sexual identity and sexual expressions in these men and their effects on mental health. In particular, the intersectionality of sexuality, stigma, and health domains among these men will be examined. Three health issues — mental health, sexual risks, and substance abuse – will be covered. Finally, a review of promising prevention and/or intervention programs will be addressed.