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Abstract

Although social workers and other helping professionals frequently stress the importance of social networks among gay men, there has been little empirical research to describe these networks. In the present study, the authors analyze data on perceived social support from 166 gay men recruited through gay community groups and social networks. Most gay men were found to have large and diverse social networks. Frequent communication occurs between respondents and network members, most of whom know of respondents' homosexuality. The most frequent and supportive network member was a close friend, and the most common type of support received was emotional. Those not in a committed relationship, and those living alone, are more likely to report feelings of loneliness and to talk to network members more often.

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