Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dominic Parrott


Minority Stress Theory posits that health disparities, such as the disproportionate development of problematic drinking, among sexual minoritized people are attributable to lifelong, experienced stressors such as enacted stigma. Researchers have examined downstream processes of stigma (i.e., what happens after stigma is experienced); however, there is little research on upstream processes (i.e., what leads to the experience of stigma in the first place). The present study sought to examine perception accuracy and perceived masculine gender expression as potential antecedents to experienced stigma and resultant problematic drinking among sexual minoritized women. Two samples of participants were recruited: 180 cisgender sexual minoritized and heterosexual women “targets” and 75 cisgender heterosexual men and women “raters.” Results indicated perception accuracy and perceived masculine gender expression were not significantly related to enacted stigma or problematic drinking. However, in accordance with Minority Stress Theory, greater experience of enacted stigma was associated with greater problematic drinking.

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