Honors Theses


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Psychology


Bachelor of Science (B.S.)



Document Type

Honors Thesis


Marginalized couples (i.e., those seen as dissimilar from the socialized standard) are still not completely accepted (Lehmiller & Agnew, 2006). Almost 50% of Americans still disapprove of Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual (LGB) couples (Changing Attitudes on Gay Marriage, 2015) and almost 13% disapprove of interracial/interethnic couples (Newport, 2013). When these couples perceive stigma due to their relationships, negative outcomes such as higher levels of depression, can occur (LeBlanc, Frost, & Wight, 2015). Previous research has identified personal factors that are similar for the acceptance of both types of marginalized couples: non-White, Republican, politically conservative, men, less educated, more religious, and older adult individuals were less accepting of both types of relationships (Haider-Markel & Joslyn, 2005). Couple composition also affects acceptance, such that Black/White couples were less accepted than Asian/White couples (Eliason, 1997; Herek, 2002; Lewandowski, 2001). This study sought to discover if acceptance of LGB couples could predict the acceptance of interracial/interethnic couples. The participant pool consisted of 152 Mississippi State University students who were taking a psychology class and were recruited via SONA systems. Multiple regression analyses and Kruskal-Wallis nonparametric tests were conducted to test the 3 hypotheses. Hypothesis1 was partially supported. Political conservatism and religiosity correlated significantly with both attitudes toward interracial/interethnic couples and LGB couples. Hypothesis 2a was not supported. Black/Black couples were significantly supported more than White/White couples. Hypothesis 2b was partially supported. Heterosexual man/Bisexual woman was accepted more than Gay man/Bisexual man. Hypothesis 3 was fully supported with attitudes toward LGB couples predicting attitudes towards interracial/interethnic couples. Future studies should use a larger sample size and examine other types of marginalized couples (e.g., age gap couples).

Publication Date


First Advisor

Hood, Kristina B.

Second Advisor

Campbell, Kristen

Third Advisor

Anderson, Thomas