The Effects of Homophobia, Partnership, Sexual Self-Labels, and Involvement of LGBT Center Activity on Coming Out in Various Social Relationships among Chinese Gay Men

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Zhengjia Ren
Xinli Chi
Chunsong Yang
Yanhong Liu
Renjie Zhang


LGBT; coming out; Chinese; gay men


The present study explored the factors that influenced the likelihood of 503 Chinese gay men’s choice of coming out in different social relationships in a Chinese cultural context.

The current study reports on data from a cross-sectional survey analyzing the relationships between the choice of coming out of a homosexual individual’s social relationships and its relation to demographics, internalized homophobia, sexual self-label, and attendance at lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) center activity using a multivariate logistic regression model.

Other-oriented identity was a predictor of outness to close friends, friends, relatives, and colleagues. The greater the frequency of attendance to LGBT center activities, the more likely the participants were to choose to come out to their parents, relative, and friends. Other demographic data, such as age, education, number of siblings, and partnership, are also factors related to outness in different social relationships.

The factors related to coming out are varied in different social relationships, which implies that individuals use different principles in different social relationships. The present study provides further evidence that mental health professionals should work with LGBT centers to help homosexual individuals with their identity development and to develop individualized assistance strategies based on different social relationships.


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