Advisor(s) - Committee Chair
Amy Brausch, Aaron Wichman, Andrew Mienaltowski
Department of Psychological Sciences
Master of Science
Research suggests that sexual minority populations are at a much higher risk for suicide than their heterosexual peers. The primary explanation for this disparity is minority stress theory. The theory of minority stress proposes that in addition to everyday stressors experienced by most people, sexual minorities experience additional unique stressors related to their sexual minority identity. Since minority stress theory was proposed in 2003, much has changed about how the United States understands and views sexual minorities. Theoretically, this should impact the way minority stress is being experienced, which may be seen by examining minority stress across sexual minorities of all ages. The goal of the present study was to examine this possibility through looking at the relationships between age, suicidal ideation, and a wide range of minority stressors. The current study found that some were stressors significantly associated with suicidal ideation while others were not. Additionally, some stressors were positively related to age, while others were negatively correlated with age, and some d id not correlate with age. Finally, some of the relationships between minority stressors and suicidal ideation were moderated by age, while other were not. These findings indicated that the relationships between, age, suicidal ideation, and minority stress are important to consider in terms of sexual minority suicide risk. These results add to the currently limited information on how sexual minority stress may associate with suicide risk across the life span and provided important insight regarding the importance of minority stress for different ages.
Arts and Humanities | Clinical Psychology | Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Health Psychology | Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies | Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences
Canen, Jenessa, "Minority Stress Through Time: Sexual Minority Stress & Suicidality Across Generations" (2023). Masters Theses & Specialist Projects. Paper 3632.
Available for download on Saturday, April 18, 2026