Meet our students: Wesley Grey
"I always hoped that I could contribute to improving research and treatment of body image and eating disorders. But to hear that my research has had an impact on vulnerable people is really special."
Wesley Grey's PhD project seeks to explore the relationships between body image and sexual desirability in sexual minority men.
Supervisor: Dr Scott Griffiths
1. Tell us briefly about your research areas of interest, what prompted you to do a PhD in this area?
My research interests are primarily body image in sexual minority men (men who have sex with/love men, gay, bisexual, or queer men) and the role of sexuality and sexual desire in body image. A few things got me interested in researching this area: lived experience as a sexual minority man, the need for more research, and how important body image is to a range of mental health outcomes.
2. Tell us about your PhD project. What is it about? What did you/do you hope to find?
I’m hoping my PhD project will look at the social and psychological role of sexual desires in sexual minority men’s body image. Not everyone feels sexually desirable, and that has a lot to do with how people view their own bodies and the bodies of others. The hope is to find out why and how sexual desirability influences sexual minority men’s body image and suggest ways to help mitigate the negative body image that comes from those experiences.
3. What is the most valuable thing that you have learned so far from doing a PhD at UoM?
For me, what’s been most meaningful is hearing through conversations that my research has had an impact on people. I always hoped that I could contribute to improving research and treatment of body image and eating disorders. But to hear that my research has had an impact on vulnerable people is really special.