Internalized homophobia is a negative self-perception because of one's own sexual orientation. The full term includes biphobia and transphobia, which extends the definition to those individuals who are different from their biological sex.
Negative self-perceptions come from the outside, as the environment in which one grows up is inherently negative towards everyone who is not heterosexual. As a result, it makes one feel very insecure around other people.
Safety is one of the most basic human needs, and if it is not realized, person percepts the outside world as a source of danger. This perception can have various forms, such as
or some combination of those forms. Similar things happen with a person who is internally homophobic.
The most frequent feelings of the person with internalized homophobia faces are fear and shame. Fear for his life because of societal prejudice, and shame because he feels that does not belong to the current system.
How is internalized homophobia expressed? A person with internalized homophobia may expose the following behaviors:
However, one should be aware that by refusing to accept yourself, such a person can make damage his/her own mental health. The consequences of internalized homophobia can be very serious: anxiety and depression disorders, suicide attempts, psychosomatic disorders, sexual disorders, and relationship problems.
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