Intimacy, Homophobia, and Gender Role Conflict

Publication Year



Friendship, Gender Roles, Sexuality, Intimacy, Homophobia


Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Gender and Sexuality | Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies | Personality and Social Contexts | Social Psychology and Interaction


Male friendship has received a great deal of criticism for not holding up to the culturally defined feminine standards of friendship. To examine how men define intimacy and its expression in their friendships and to investigate how the male gender role and homophobia influence the closeness of these friendships, a series of three studies was conducted. Implications of this research include new ways of defining men's friendship in light of healthy aspects as well as identifying areas of needed improvement. Suggestions were made for ways to reduce the social distance between heterosexual and gay/bisexual men so as to provide a model for friendship between men of different sexual orientations.

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