Pride Month and Mental Health Awareness, Friday 29 June 2018

June 28, 2018 marked the 49th anniversary of the Stonewall Riot, the event that sparked the LGBTQ+ rights movement in the United States, and later inspired Pride events every June. In honor of this important milestone, we wanted to shed light on mental health issues still affecting the LGBTQ community.

Unfortunately, a stigma still exists surrounding LGBTQ communities, which leads to increased rates of bullying, harassment, and even homelessness among a disproportionately large percentage of this population, particularly LGBTQ youth. Such stressors put these individuals at a much greater risk of developing mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD.

A 2016 CDC report states some alarming statistics about suicidality, including:

  • LGBTQ youth seriously consider suicide at three times the rate of their straight peers, and are five times as likely to have attempted suicide
  • Suicide attempts by LGBTQ youth are four to six times as likely to result in injury, poisoning, or overdose that requires medical intervention

With your help we can reduce stigma around LGBTQ identity! While we work towards a safer and happier future, there are thankfully many resources available for LGBTQ people in crisis that we encourage you to share. A few are listed below:

HDRF’s work to fund research into the origins, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of depression and its related mood disorders will go a long way to ensure the safety of the many proud and brave LGBTQ members of our society.

Sources:

CDC. (2016). Sexual Identity, Sex of Sexual Contacts, and Health-Risk Behaviors Among Students in Grades 9-12: Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Sexual Orientation and Depression: Statistics and Where to Find Help.” Healthline, Healthline Media, www.healthline.com/health/depression/gay.

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