Psychological sequelae of hate-crime victimization among lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults

J Consult Clin Psychol. 1999 Dec;67(6):945-51. doi: 10.1037//0022-006x.67.6.945.


Questionnaire data about criminal victimization experiences were collected from 2,259 Sacramento-area lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals (N = 1,170 women, 1,089 men). Approximately 1/5 of the women and 1/4 of the men had experienced victimization because of their adult sexual orientation. Hate crimes were less likely than nonbias crimes to have been reported to police. Compared with other recent crime victims, lesbian and gay hate-crime survivors manifested significantly more symptoms of depression, anger, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress. They also displayed significantly more crime-related fears and beliefs, lower sense of mastery, and more attributions of their personal setbacks to sexual prejudice than did nonbias crime victims and nonvictims. Comparable differences were not observed among bisexuals. The findings highlight the importance of recognizing hate-crime survivors' special needs in clinical settings and in public policy.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Bisexuality / psychology*
  • Crime Victims / psychology*
  • Crime*
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / psychology*
  • Female
  • Hate*
  • Homosexuality / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / diagnosis
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires