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Original Research

Open Access


  • Zhengjia Ren1
  • Ralph Hood2
  • Chunsong Yang3
  • Xiqi Lu4
  • Qiuyu Su5
  • Li Tsingan6

1Department of Clinical Psychology, Southwest Hospital, The First Hospital Affiliated to Army Medical University (Third Military Medical University), Chongqing, China

2Department of Psychology, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga, TN, USA

3West China Second Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China

4School of Law, Jiangxi University of Finance and Economics, Nanchang, China

5Department of Management, Culverhouse College of Business, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL, USA

6School of Psychology, Beijing Normal University, Institute of Developmental Psychology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing, China

DOI: 10.22374/jomh.v15i3.147 Vol.15,Issue 3,July 2019 pp.25-34

Published: 02 July 2019

*Corresponding Author(s): Li Tsingan E-mail:

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Background and Objective

Internalized homophobia is common among gay men. Gay men who live in high-tolerance social envi-ronments tend to have less internalized homophobia than gay men who live in low-tolerance environ-ments. The interaction between the living environment and self-construal influences gay men’s internalized homophobia.

Material and Methods

This study examined the association between self-construal and homophobia according to the living environment using a sample of gay men (N=521) aged 14–43 years. The data were collected between January and August 2017 using an online questionnaire that included an internalized homophobia scale, self-construal items, and demographic characteristics. The two-way ANOVA analyses revealed that the self-construal type was differentially associated with internalized homophobia depending on the living environment of the study participants.


Living in a high-tolerance area while having an independent self-construal was associated with lower internalized homophobia scores than living in a low-tolerance area. In contrast, alternating between independent and dependent self-construals was associated with higher internalized homophobia scores.


Mental health services for participants with conflicted self-construals are emerging. Self-acceptance and compassion-focused practices should be explored as a way to help gay men adjust their conflicted self-construals.


self-construal, homophobia, cross-cultural, homosexuality

Cite and Share

Zhengjia Ren,Ralph Hood,Chunsong Yang,Xiqi Lu,Qiuyu Su,Li Tsingan. THE EFFECTS OF SELF-CONSTRUAL AND THE LIVING ENVIRONMENT ON INTERNALIZED HOMOPHOBIA AMONG CHINESE GAY MEN. Journal of Men's Health. 2019. 15(3);25-34.


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