Gender role conflict in gay men living in Ireland : a study to investigate gender role conflict in gay men living in Ireland and to compare these findings against their heterosexual peers

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McMahon, John
Issue Date
BA (Hons) Counselling and Psychotherapy
Dublin Business School
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This study examined gender role conflict (GRC) in 20 homosexual men and 20 heterosexual men living in Ireland to identify if homosexual men have high rates of GRC and if they have higher rates of GRC than their heterosexual counterparts. Research into GRC in homosexual men has not received adequate attention while there has been no research on GRC in homosexual men living in Ireland allowing this study to be the first of its kind in Ireland Using a quantitative approach, the Gender Role Conflict Scale (GRCS) (O'Neil, 1986) was used to extract quantitative data to measure the four factors that gender role conflict affects; Success, Power, Competition (SPC), Restrictive Emotionality (RE), Restrictive Affective Behaviour Between Men (RABBM), and Conflicts Between Work and Family Relations (CBWFR). The higher the scores given on the Gender Role Conflict Scale (GRCS) indicate a higher degree of conflict within the GRC factors. Age, education, relationship status, and race were all taken into consideration as variables measured. The findings concluded that heterosexual men had higher scores of GRC in all four subgroups when mean tested, though when significance testing was performed, RABBM was the only subgroup which heterosexual men scored significantly higher in. These findings suggest that while some gay men do experience reactions to society's expectations of the male gender role, their sexual orientation does not increase or cause levels of GRC.