Basic Psychological Needs Specific to LGB Identity



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Self-determination theory (SDT) posits the three basic psychological needs of autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Satisfaction of these needs is essential to one’s well-being. This research examined satisfaction and frustration of these needs regarding one’s lesbian/gay/bisexual (LGB) identity. Using this framework, this study adds to our understanding of how stigma and the concealment or outness of one’s identity relate to one’s well-being. The study assessed well-being, stigma, and outness as well as an adaptation of basic psychological needs satisfaction and frustration. This cross-sectional survey study assessed 350 participants to validate the adapted scale. Through exploratory factor analysis the adapted scale yielded two factors of satisfaction and frustration and was internally reliable. It was hypothesized that satisfaction of psychological needs regarding one’s identity would be positively associated with well-being. Similarly, stigma and outness were predicted to be negatively and positively associated with well-being, respectively. Results supported these hypotheses. Further, potential mediation and moderation by need satisfaction were examined. While interactions were not significant, the mediation hypotheses received mixed support that indicates that this would benefit from further research. This study created an internally reliable measure of need specific identity satisfaction and frustration which has clear associations with well-being, stigma, and outness.



LGB, Self-Determination Theory, Identity, Stigma