Abstract and Keywords
Same-sex and gender-variant couples are similar to heterosexual/gender-traditional couples in many ways. However, lesbian, gay, and bisexual couples and couples with one or both transgender partners (LGBT couples) exist in a stigmatizing environment that provides no social structures for them. As a result, these couples face three types of challenges: minority stress, lack of social support, and role and relational ambiguity. The author reviews research on these three challenges and offers specific techniques to address them. A conceptual model creates a bridge between sociocultural challenges and the psychological-relational consequences, affording therapists an understanding of how to plan and implement effective interventions. In addition, seven basic premises provide parameters for work with LGBT couples.
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