Investigating Resiliency in Preventing Binge Drinking and Stimulant Use Among Black Men at High-Risk for HIV

Abstract: There is a profoundly disproportionate HIV burden that exists among young black men who have sex with men (YBMSM). Substance use has been inextricably linked to HIV transmission since the beginning of the epidemic. Black Americans report the highest levels of discrimination due to race/ethnicity, poverty, and substance use and these discriminatory experiences are likely to increase their risk for HIV infection. Informed by Minority Stress Theory (Meyer, 1995), the proposed 1-year study will support additional data analyses to test the minority stress model for alcohol and other drug use among 1565 YBMSM at high-risk for HIV. Aim 1: Examine the relationship between stressful experiences of racism, homophobia, and internalized homophobia and the use of alcohol and other drugs among YBMSM. Aim 2: Determine if resiliency, gay pride/self-esteem, and social support moderate the relationship between stressful experiences of racism, homophobia, and internalized homophobia and the use of alcohol and other drugs among YBMSM. Aim 3: Assess for the moderating effect of gay pride/self-esteem, resiliency and social support on the relationship between stressful experiences of racism, homophobia, and internalized homophobia and sexual risk behavior. The proposed study will have important scientific, clinical, and public health implications. a) Scientific: This study will advance our basic understanding of resiliency processes that are relevant to preventing/reducing substance use among YBMSM. b) Clinical: Findings from this study will inform our efforts to adapt substance abuse interventions so that they focus on increasing resiliency among YBMSM. c) Public Health: Resiliency factors that may combat the negative affect that arises from multiple discriminatory could inform the implementation of substance abuse prevention campaigns. Findings will also support the provision of resiliency based mental health and substance abuse treatment to address the elevated prevalence of substance use among this most vulnerable sub-group of MSM.

Project Number: 1R03DA042660-01A1