Document Type


Date of Degree

Summer 2019

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Psychological and Quantitative Foundations

First Advisor

Wojciak, Armeda

First Committee Member

Fitzke, Kayla

Second Committee Member

Priest, Jacob

Third Committee Member

Schmidt, Renita

Fourth Committee Member

Estrada-Hernandez, Noel


Coming out as a sexual minority can be a challenging process (D’amico, Julien, Tremblay, & Chartrand, 2015) and having supportive allies and advocates within the family makes that process less strenuous (Luke & Goodrich, 2015). The sibling relationship has been shown to play a significant supportive role in the lives of LGB people while coming out as sexual minorities (Haxhe, Cerezo, Bergfeld, & Walloch, 2017). Scholars have found that when a second child within the family system comes out as LGB, it gives the parents a chance to improve aspects of their parenting compared to the first child who came out to them. However, there is still little known about LGB sibling’s shared experience with both being sexual minorities. Chapter 2 in this dissertation is a systemic review on the topic of multiple LGB sibling families. Results indicating that these families exist but are not properly represented in literature. With LGB individuals having an increased risks of negative mental health outcomes (Russell & Fish, 2016), Chapter three explores the lived experiences of LGB individuals with LGB siblings. The purpose of the present study is twofold: 1) to examine if coming out to an LGB sibling increases the chances of an ally/advocate within the family and 2) helps lower negative mental health outcomes. Results from this qualitive study include significant differences of lived experiences based on order the siblings came out with family dynamic changes to improve family cohesion. Participants also reported viewing their siblings as allies which played a role in helping with negative mental health symptoms such as depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation. Finally, this study utilized feminist family theory and found a less likely chance in power projection once both siblings were out. Clinical implications and future research directions will be discussed at length.


Ally, Family Systems, Feminist Theory, LGBTQ, Mental Health, Sibling Relationship


xiv, 130 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 112-125).


Copyright © 2019 Casey Michael Gamboni