Internalized heterosexism, alcohol use, and alcohol-related problems among lesbians and gay men

Addict Behav. 2006 Jul;31(7):1153-62. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2005.08.013. Epub 2005 Sep 22.


Research regarding internalized heterosexism in relation to alcohol use and alcohol-related problems has suffered from methodological problems. Moreover, the results of the research have been mixed. The purpose of the current study was to examine internalized heterosexism in relation to alcohol use and alcohol-related problems among a sample of 335 lesbians and gay men recruited through lesbian and gay events, listserves, and friendship networks. Females completed the Lesbian Internalized Homophobia Scale [Szymanski, D. M., & Chung, Y. B. (2001). The internalized homophobia scale for lesbians: A rational/theoretical approach. Journal of Homosexuality, 41(2), 37-52.]; males completed the Internalized Homonegativity Inventory [Mayfield, W. (2001). The development of an internalized homonegativity inventory for gay men. Journal of Homosexuality, 41(2), 53-76.]. Items from the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse [Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2000). National household survey on drug abuse: main findings 1998. Rockville, MD: Author.] measured alcohol consumption. The Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test [Selzer, M. L. (1971). The Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test: the quest for a new diagnostic instrument. American Journal of Psychiatry, 127, 89-94.] and the Drinker Inventory of Consequences [Miller, W. R., Tonigan, J. S., & Longabaugh, R. (1995). The drinker inventory of consequences (DrInC): An instrument for assessing adverse consequences of alcohol abuse test manual. National institute on alcohol abuse and alcoholism project match monograph series volume 4. Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.] measured alcohol-related problems. The hypothesis that a positive relationship exists was partially supported for lesbians, but generally not supported for males.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Alcohol Drinking / epidemiology
  • Alcohol Drinking / psychology*
  • Alcohol-Related Disorders / epidemiology
  • Alcohol-Related Disorders / psychology*
  • Female
  • Homosexuality, Female / psychology*
  • Homosexuality, Male / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Regression Analysis
  • United States / epidemiology