The psychological implications of concealing a stigma: a cognitive-affective-behavioral model.

Department of Psychology, Stony Brook University, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY 11794, USA.
Psychological Bulletin (Impact Factor: 14.39). 04/2007; 133(2):328-45. DOI: 10.1037/0033-2909.133.2.328
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Many assume that individuals with a hidden stigma escape the difficulties faced by individuals with a visible stigma. However, recent research has shown that individuals with a concealable stigma also face considerable stressors and psychological challenges. The ambiguity of social situations combined with the threat of potential discovery makes possessing a concealable stigma a difficult predicament for many individuals. The increasing amount of research on concealable stigmas necessitates a cohesive model for integrating relevant findings. This article offers a cognitive-affective-behavioral process model for understanding the psychological implications of concealing a stigma. It ends with discussion of potential points of intervention in the model as well as potential future routes for investigation of the model.

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May 20, 2014