Publication Abstract Display
Type: Published Manuscript
Title: Associations among coping style, personality unsafe sexual behavior, depression, conflict over sexual orientation, and gender nonconformity: HIV status as a modulating variable.
Authors: Weinrich JD, Atkinson JH, Patterson TL, McCutchan JA, Gonsiorek JC, Grant I, and the HNRC Group
Year: 1995
Publication: Journal of Psychology and Human Sexuality
Volume: 7 Issue: Pages: 135-160
Abstract:Little attention has been given to dispositional variables in relapse into unsafe sex. In two previous papers, we showed (1) that recurrent adult depression in the gay/bisexual men in our sample is often associated with high gender nonconformity, especially core gender dysphoria, in childhood, (2) that coping strategies and personality scores are associated with changes from 1979 to 1989 in unsafe sex-defined as receiving semen rectally without a condom (RSR), and (3) that sexual identity conflicts are related to a general style of escape-avoidant coping, (4) which is in turn associated with the MMPI profiles previously shown to correlate with unsafe sex. Here we break down these analyses to see if these patterns are related to HIV status. We studied over 500 gay/bisexual men who contributed SCID interviews, Freund Feminine Gender Identity scale scores, MMPI-2 profiles, Ways of Coping (Revised) scores, Profile of Mood States (POMS) scores, and sex histories (ns varied by analysis). Concerning the relationship between FGI and depression (1), we found that the correlations persisted in the HIV positive subsample, but vanished to insignificance among the HIV negative controls. A similar pattern emerged in the correlations pertaining to MMPI scores and unsafe sex (2), as well as in the association between escape-avoidant coping and sexual identity conflict (3). The analyses correlating the MMPI scores with escape-avoidant coping were, in contrast, equally strongly associated when broken down by HIV status. A series of sample selection biases could account for these results. It would be more parsimonious, however, to hypothesize a deeper rationale. We suggest more investigation of the possibility that psychological and sexological variables may have more intriguing effects on sexual behaviors or Ihe dispositional factors (perhaps even immunologic ones) leading to HIV exposure than has been recognized to date.

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