Research from the Netherlands has reported that bisexual and lesbian women suffer anxiety, depression and insomnia and are the targets of gossip and abuse.
The University of Amsterdam study found that women under 25 were more vulnerable to these problems than those over 50.
“The most negative reactions to their lesbian or bisexual women have received the strangers on the street, in the nightlife and colleagues (or class or students),” says the study, according to the Telegraaf.
“A greater frequency of stigmatising events appeared to be related to both the stated as well as psychological and somatic complaints of women.”
2,000 women were questioned for the study.
The Dutch Education Minister Ronald Plasterk spoke out at a an event run by a lesbian advocacy group.
“We only live once, and let’s have everyone, men and women, leading the life they want to lead, and especially enjoying love and sexuality,” he said, according to Radio Netherlands.
“There are still women and men who for years don’t dare admit they’re lesbian or gay just because they may not be accepted by those around them. Successful, strong role models can help support lesbian and bisexual women.”