Korean J Fam Pract. 2017; 7(3): 358-364  https://doi.org/10.21215/kjfp.2017.7.3.358
Study on Stress and Mental Health of Domestic Homosexual Cohabiting Couples
Hyung-Uk In, Byeong-Hoon Oh, Ki-Won Kim, Jung-Cheol Park*
Department of Family Medicine, Green Hospital, Seoul, Korea
Jung-Cheol Park
Tel: +82-2-490-2207, Fax: +82-2-490-2242
E-mail: drawlife7@daum.net
Received: March 15, 2016; Revised: October 4, 2016; Accepted: October 7, 2016; Published online: June 20, 2017.
© Korean Academy of Family Medicine. All rights reserved.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract
Background: As equal rights and the right to pursue happiness are being emphasized upon all over the world, the issue of same-sex marriage is coming to the forefront. Since same-sex marriage has not been legalized in Korea, the purpose of this study is to target cohabiting homosexual couples and to grasp factors influencing their mental health, such as quality of life, depression, anxiety, etc.
Methods: In all, 116 members of various homosexual groups were targeted. Of them, 54 were cohabiting couples, which were an experimental group, and 62 were singles, which were a control group. An interview was performed with four cohabiting couples to grasp their main problems, and a survey was performed to collect data related to depression, anxiety, quality of life, and demographic characteristics.
Results: Although both couples and singles showed normal levels on depression and anxiety scales, couples had more favorable results than singles. The results of evaluating quality of life revealed that there was no significant difference between couples and singles. Moreover, those who admitted to being cohabiting couples had significantly more favorable results on depression and quality of life scales than those who did not.
Conclusion: Cohabiting homosexual couples considered each other as companions and tried to maintain their family, and thus they were mentally stable and satisfied with life. As Confucian family culture is still dominant in Korea, it would not be sufficient to only refer to foreign research. Thus, there is a need to approach mental health and quality of life of homosexuals as members of our society.
Keywords: Same-Sex Marriage; Homosexuality; Mental Health; Depression; Anxiety
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