'I was terrified of being different"': exploring gay men's accounts of growing-up in a heterosexist society

P. Flowers, K. Buston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examined retrospective accounts of gay identity formation during adolescence. Twenty in-depth interviews were conducted with working-class gay men from a small town in the north of England. Themes salient to understanding their adolescent experiences of identity formation were identified: "defined by difference", "self-reflection and inner conflict", "alienation and isolation", "living a lie", "telling others", and "wholeness and integrity". We illustrate how the socio-cultural context of compulsory heterosexuality is central in understanding accounts of both reported minority stress and identity construction. The implications of the research for future interventions designed to tackle homophobia and heterosexism are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-65
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Adolescence
Volume24
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2001

Keywords

  • working-class gay men
  • identity formation

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of ''I was terrified of being different"': exploring gay men's accounts of growing-up in a heterosexist society'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this