SBM 2016: Stigma, Relationship Contexts, and Cherry Blossoms

Dr. Lisa Rosenthal and I will be co-chairing a symposium at this year’s SBM meeting. We look forward to sharing research about stigma in relationship contexts along with Drs. Sarabeth Broder-Fingert and Kristi Gamarel before taking in the cherry blossoms! The symposium abstract and details are listed below. We hope to see you there!

  • Title: Stigma in Relationship Contexts: Implications for Behavioral Health Research
  • Date: Thursday, March 31, 2016
  • Time: 1:45 – 3:00 PM
  • Place: Lincoln East at the Washington Hilton
  • Abstract: Stigma (social devaluation and discrediting) is experienced within relationship contexts in several key ways. When one member of a relationship is stigmatized, the other member may experience stigma due to their association with the stigmatized individual. Parents of children with behavioral and physical health conditions may experience this associative stigma. Additionally, relationship members may experience stigma due to the nature of their relationship. Interracial and same-sex couples may experience this relationship stigma. Although understudied within stigma and behavioral health research, associative and relationship stigma have important implications for health behaviors and outcomes of relationship members. This symposium brings together four diverse presentations on stigma in relationship contexts to spotlight advances in this area of research and stimulate ideas for future research. Presenters will focus on several important relationship types (parent-child, romantic) and a variety of stigmas (race, gender identity, sexual orientation, substance use disorders, autism spectrum disorder). They draw on qualitative and advanced quantitative analyses (including dyadic analyses) to explore the impact of associative and relationship stigma on a range of health behaviors and outcomes among relationship members (treatment adherence, substance use, depressive symptoms). Discussion will focus on the importance of studying and intervening in stigma in relationship contexts to improve the health of people experiencing associative and relationship stigma.