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Meet an AJO Researcher: Jae A. Puckett, Ph.D.

November 14, 2022

Meet Jae A. Puckett, Ph.D.— Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at Michigan State University, Director of the Trans-ilience: Transgender Stress and Resilience Research Team, and lead author of the AJO article, “Transgender and gender diverse individuals’ daily experiences of rumination.”

We asked Jae several questions about their study in AJO and other research they are currently working on.

What are 3 key takeaways from your recent AJO publication?

1. Transgender and gender diverse (TGD) people commonly report experiencing rumination as a product of social stressors and marginalization, which is one pathway through which oppression may impact mental health.

2. The content of this rumination can range from everyday stressors, like finances, to novel experiences related to gender affirmation, interpersonal rejection, political oppression, and fears for safety.

3. This study also expands conceptual frameworks for understanding transgender people’s experiences of minority stress. 

What are the policy implications of this research?

The sociopolitical context in which transgender people are living has important implications for mental health and well-being. The political landscape shapes access to resources and marginalization. Because of this, we need structural level interventions to reduce exposure to minority stressors for transgender people.

What are you working on now?

Colleagues Em Matsuno and Paz Galupo and I just received news last week that we were awarded funding from NIMHD to conduct a longitudinal study of resilience in transgender communities. We’ll be developing a unique scale to better measure resilience in transgender individuals which moves beyond the individualistic focus of much of psychology and considers interpersonal and systemic factors. This study is also unique in that we’ll be able to examine resilience over time and the effects on buffering the impact of minority stress on mental health and well-being.

Connect with Jae:

To learn more about Jae and their work, visit their Michigan State faculty webpage.

Our Meet an AJO Researcher series spotlights recent research published in the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry and the researchers behind this work.

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