Journal Article

Blurred border or safe harbor? Emotional well-being among sexual and gender minority adults working from home during COVID-19

Amerikaner, L., Xu Yan, H., Sayer, L. C., Doan, L., Fish, J. N., Drotning, K. J., Rinderknecht, R. G.
Social Science and Medicine, 323:115850, 1–10 (2023)


During the COVID-19 pandemic, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) adults have experienced pronounced declines in well-being. However, less is known about how changes to daily routines and settings, such as the shift to remote work within many occupations, may be playing a role in well-being outcomes. Drawing on a unique time diary data source (N = 3515 respondents and 7650 episodes) collected between April 2020–July 2021 through online crowdsourcing platforms, we conducted random effects analyses to examine how working from home has been associated with experienced well-being among LGBTQ and cisgender heterosexual workers in the United States during the pandemic. Findings indicate LGBTQ adults felt significantly less stressed and tired while doing paid work at home than while working at a workplace. In addition, working at a work-place, rather than working from home, appeared to be more detrimental to LGBTQ adults’ well-being compared to their non-LGBTQ counterparts. Adjusting for work characteristics explained some of the difference, whereas adjusting for family characteristics had little impact on the results. It is possible that for LGBTQ employees, working from home mitigates some of the minority stressors experienced during paid work.

Keywords: USA
The Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) in Rostock is one of the leading demographic research centers in the world. It's part of the Max Planck Society, the internationally renowned German research society.