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Occupational Preferences, Childhood Behavior, and Openness: The Role of Sex, Sexual Orientation, and Gender Identity in Iran

  • Special Section: The Puzzles of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity
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Previous research suggests that both same-sex attraction and the personality trait “openness” are associated with sex-atypical preferences and behaviors. Here, we examined the links between adulthood occupational preferences, childhood play behavior, and openness among Iranian cisgender gynephilic males (n = 228), cisgender ambiphilic males (n = 48), cisgender androphilic males (n = 178), transgender androphilic males (n = 58), cisgender androphilic females (n = 226), cisgender ambiphilic females (n = 94), cisgender gynephilic females (n = 31), and transgender gynephilic females (n = 121) from Iran. Cisgender and transgender same-sex attracted males and females exhibited sex-atypical occupational preferences with the latter group showing even more sex-atypicality than the former. The personality trait openness did not differ between cisgender groups. Transgender androphilic males had a significantly higher mean score for openness compared to cisgender androphilic females and transgender gynephilic females, whereas transgender gynephilic females had a significantly lower mean score compared to cisgender androphilic males. In both males and females, childhood sex-atypicality, same-sex attraction, and openness were associated with sex-atypical occupational preferences. Our findings from Iran provides cross-cultural support for interconnectedness of childhood and adulthood sex-atypicality, openness, and same-sex attraction in males and females who are cisgender and transgender.

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This work was supported by the University of Lethbridge and by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Insight Grant awarded to Paul L. Vasey.

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Authors PLV and MSB contributed to the study conceptualization and design. Material preparation, data collection and analysis were performed by MSB, AT, MM, ZA, and MJS. The first draft of the manuscript was written by MSB and PLV, and all authors commented on subsequent versions of the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Mostafa Sadr-Bazzaz.

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The authors have no competing interests to declare that are relevant to the content of this article.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in this study were in accordance with 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments. The questionnaires and methodology for this study were reviewed and approved by the University of Lethbridge Human Participant Research Committee (2021-063) and the University of Alberta Research Ethic Board (Pro00119877).

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Informed written consent was obtained from all participants prior to taking part in the study.

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Sadr-Bazzaz, M., Talaei, A., Sadeghi, M.J. et al. Occupational Preferences, Childhood Behavior, and Openness: The Role of Sex, Sexual Orientation, and Gender Identity in Iran. Arch Sex Behav (2024).

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