the lesbian, gay and bisexual charity

What is homophobia?

Homophobia is the irrational hatred, intolerance, and fear of lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people.

These negative feelings fuel the myths, stereotypes, and discrimination that can lead to violence against LGB people.

LGB people brought up in a homophobic society can often internalise these negative stereotypes and develop varying degrees of low self-esteem and self-hatred, often described as 'internalised homophobia'.

The word homophobia was constructed by the heterosexual psychologist George Weinberg in the late 1960s. He used homophobia to label heterosexuals’ dread of being in close quarters with homosexuals as well as homosexuals’ internalised oppression. The word first appeared in print in 1969.


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