Objectives. Nationally representative data were used to examine associations of romantic attractions and relationships with substance use and abuse. Methods. Data from the Add Health Study were examined. Youths reporting same-sex and both-sex romantic attractions and relationships were compared with those reporting opposite-sex attractions. Survey regression and logistic regression were used to control for sample design effects. Results. In the case of certain outcomes, romantic attraction affected males differently than females. Youths with both-sex attractions were at a somewhat higher risk for substance use and abuse than were heterosexual youths; females with same-sex attractions were also at higher risk for some outcomes. Sexual-minority youths varied little from heterosexual youths in regard to trajectories of substance use and abuse. Conclusions. These findings highlight the importance of distinguishing between youths with only same-sex attractions and those with both-sex attractions. These findings also call into question previous findings indicating that sexual-minority youths are automatically "at risk.".
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health