Discrimination, Victimization, and Hazardous Drinking Among LGB Adults in the United States: Findings From Population-Based Data

Wouter Kiekens , University of Groningen
Jessica Fish, University of Maryland
Allegra Gordon, Harvard University
Stephen T. Russell, University of Texas at Austin

Sexual orientation disparities in alcohol abuse and dependence are well-established and vary by gender, yet population-based data on within-group differences are lacking. It is hypothesized that LGB people use alcohol in reaction to discrimination and victimization, but it remains unclear whether alcohol use and abuse may be greater in response to general discrimination or victimization, or to discrimination or victimization based on one’s sexual orientation and gender identity or expression (SOGIE). Using the first nationally representative sample of LGB adults in the US, the current study tested how general (non-identity related) and SOGIE-related victimization and discrimination explain differences in hazardous drinking. General discrimination was associated with less hazardous drinking among gay men, whereas SOGIE-related discrimination was associated with greater hazardous drinking for gay men. For women with a bisexual/emergent sexual identity, general discrimination was associated with more hazardous drinking, whereas SOGIE-related discrimination was associated with less hazardous drinking.

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 Presented in Session 71. Gender, Sexuality, and Population Health