Homosexual Teens

Particular Issues in Child And Youth Care

Group care presents situations more likely to foster same sex contact than for teens
living in their own homes:
 Residents are separated by gender and there is less contact with the
opposite sex than is true for teens in the community
 The physical layout is designed for observation, not for privacy, making
private opportunities for normative sexual outlets (masturbation) hard to
find
 The living situation creates the closeness of family without kinship
 Residents spend much more time together than teens living in their own
families
 Issues of confidentiality make it difficult for a gay teen to explore their
questions of confusion due to the fact that information shared with one staff
member is routinely shared with other team members, hampering
disclosure
 Grouping youth who have learned to use sex to manipulate relationships,
with others who have identified with the sexual aggressor, still others who
have developed “learned helplessness” and no longer believe they have the
power to influence how others treat them, creates an environment where
sexual exploitation and abuse is more likely to occur than in other settings
The context of group care – a therapeutic thrust toward sharing feelings, being
honest, and dealing with one’s emotions, fears, and concerns- creates a tension for
a gay teen between following interactions that lead to closeness and fearing sharing
honestly because of desires for physical and emotional safety and fears of
rejection.