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Title: On feeling torn about one's sexuality : the effects of explicit-implicit sexual orientation ambivalence
Author: Windsor-Shellard, Ben
ISNI:       0000 0004 5919 6749
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2015
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This research addressed the consequences of explicit-implicit sexual orientation (SO) ambivalence in samples of straight- and gay-identified individuals. Study 1 revealed worse psychological health among straight-identified individuals with greater SO ambivalence. Further, greater SO ambivalence was linked with negative self-identity, an effect moderated by the direction of ambivalence. Given these negative psychological effects, the research aimed to investigate how individuals resolved their ambivalence via the processing of relevant information. In Studies 1 and 2 straight-identified individuals with greater SO ambivalence took longer to respond to direct questions on sexuality, an effect moderated by the direction of ambivalence. In an additional sample of straight-identified individuals, Study 3 confirmed the robustness of these effects by replicating the same pattern of findings using an established measure of systematic processing, thought elaboration. Study 3 also demonstrated the impact of anti-gay attitudes on the processing of information relevant to SO. In samples of gay-identified individuals, Studies 4 and 5 demonstrated that individual differences in SO ambivalence also impacted the processing of direct questions on sexuality, but in ways that differed to straight-identified individuals. Individual differences in SO ambivalence also related to well-being, stigma, and out-group discrimination. Additionally, for gay-identified individuals, the research considered implications of discrepant explicit-implicit evaluations towards one’s SO. Discrepant explicit-implicit evaluations of SO related to discrepant self-esteem and smaller actual-ideal discrepancies. Further, a number of negative outcomes were observed when gay-identified individuals reported being positive towards their SO whilst being somewhat more negative towards it on the implicit measure. Study 6 examined wider implications of SO ambivalence in a further sample of straight-identified individuals. The findings showed that information relevant to SO ambivalence is communicated non-verbally, and that the experience of SO ambivalence moderates the ability to detect such information.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology