Kink-Oriented People and Exogenous Oppressions: Understanding Mental Health and Related Service Use in a Rural Context

Tamara D. Reynish, Ha Hoang, Heather Bridgman, Bróna Nic Giolla Easpaig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Rural, kink-oriented people experience much exogenous oppression and yet related research is scarce. This study examined the risk and protective factors of kink-oriented rural Tasmanian Australians with preexisting mental health conditions and help-seeking barriers and facilitators. Participants completed either an online survey (n = 42), an interview (n = 10), or both. Thematic analysis and descriptive statistics were used to analyze the qualitative and quantitative data, respectively. Participants aged 18 to 61 were gender and sexually diverse and better educated but had more lifetime suicide attempts than the general public. Despite the increasing normalization of kink, 90.5% of participants have never seen a kink-aware mental health professional (MHP) and nearly 83.0% did not disclose to an MHP for fear of stigma or discrimination. Self-awareness, resilience, social support and kink improved participants’ mental health. Tailored support from trained MHP is vital to improve the mental health of kink-oriented people in rural areas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-24
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Homosexuality
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2022
Externally publishedYes

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