LGBTQIA+ at Higher Risk for Mental Health Issues

There have been several studies that have been conducted that have found that individuals within the LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersex, Agender/Asexual) community have higher rates of certain mental disorders compared to those that identify as heterosexual. There appear to be higher rates of major depression, generalized anxiety disorder, and substance abuse in LGBTQIA+ youth. Not only that, but studies have also found that they are more likely to have suicidal thoughts or participate in some form of self-harm than their heterosexual counterparts. These issues could be a result of discrimination that the community faces. Queer youth tend to face bullying issues during their time in school, particularly middle and high school. Some of this can be verbal or physical violence, or even discrimination from the faculty at the school itself, such as exclusion from being able to participate in certain activities or sports. Transgender studies are especially victims of this kind of treatment. They are commonly unable to use the bathroom that corresponds with their gender identity and are also excluded from participating in sports of their gender identity. Some transgender students are forced to use separate bathrooms or to even use a port-a-potty that is available outside for them. This kind of treatment can result in the development of certain mental disorders, particularly anxiety and depression. It’s an issue that all schools need to address and something that needs to be acknowledged by the general public more so these issues can be solved.



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