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J Gay Lesbian Ment Health. 2017;21(1):3-31. doi: 10.1080/19359705.2016.1217499. Epub 2016 Jul 27.

Sexual minority youth of color: A content analysis and critical review of the literature.

Author information

1
Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences, Family Studies and Human Development, The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA.
2
Department of Child and Adolescent Development, California State University-Northridge, Northridge, California, USA.
3
Human Development and Family Science, University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri, USA.
4
Department of Women Studies, San Diego State University, San Diego, California, USA.

Abstract

This study analyzed the content of 125 unique reports published since 1990 that have examined the health and well-being-as well as the interpersonal and contextual experiences-of sexual minority youth of color (SMYoC). One-half of reports sampled only young men, 73% were noncomparative samples of sexual minority youth, and 68% of samples included multiple racial-ethnic groups (i.e., 32% of samples were mono-racial/ethnic). Most reports focused on health-related outcomes (i.e., sexual and mental health, substance use), while substantially fewer attended to normative developmental processes (i.e., identity development) or contextual and interpersonal relationships (i.e., family, school, community, or violence). Few reports intentionally examined how intersecting oppressions and privileges related to sexual orientation and race-ethnicity contributed to outcomes of interest. Findings suggest that research with SMYoC has been framed by a lingering deficit perspective, rather than emphasizing normative developmental processes or cultural strengths. The findings highlight areas for future research focused on minority stress, coping, and resilience of SMYoC.

KEYWORDS:

Health; qualitative methods; racial-ethnic identity; sexual orientation; social inequality

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