at least among some urban populations.7 A third hypothesis is based on the stages of an adolescent’s acquisition of les-bian or bisexual identity. “Heterosexual immersion ” may be one strategy for re-sponding to the identity confusion stage of development: “Some adolescents es-tablish heterosexual involvements in hopes of ‘curing ’ themselves of their ho-mosexual interests....In some cases, an adolescent girl may purposely become pregnant to prove that she isn’t lesbian.”8 Researchers have echoed this proposition on the basis of both their own investiga-tions and their clinical experience.9 Yet another hypothesis considers social stigma and the risks associated with com-ing out. A review of the literature and dis-cussion of clinical experience reported that gay, lesbian and bisexual teenagers who reveal their sexual orientation to others often are rejected or abused by family and friends.10 These teenagers are more like-ly than their heterosexual peers to drop out of school and run away from or be forced out of their homes. As with most homeless youth, their principal method Elizabeth M. Saewyc is manager of clinical services
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