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Survey: 40% of LGBT young people believe they have mental health problems

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  1. Think it fair to say that any problems arising are not because of our sexual orientation, but because other people – either at a personal or institutional level – insist on making our lives harder than they have to be to serve their own vile agenda.

    Also fair to say that this stat is reflective of a great understanding of mental health conditions, and of a step in the right direction of de-stigmatising them.

    Important to not let people directly correlate being LGBT with having a condition – I know there are some who would love to do so, but very much think there isn’t much truth to it (and indeed, all they would be doing is demonstrating how they are part of the problem by demonising us).

    1. floridahank 27 Sep 2013, 3:05pm

      Hey Val, LGBT people have mental health issues just the same as do heterosexual people. It’s unrealistic to say, “Think it fair to say that any problems arising are not because of our sexual orientation, but because other people – either at a personal or institutional level – insist on making our lives harder than they have to be to serve their own vile agenda.”
      Are you saying that homosexuals don’t have any personal problems brought on simply because their human beings, not only because you seem to think that society causes them to mental health issues?
      You are very narrow minded to think that way. As with human sexual development, there are many issues to contend with. How about a young homosexual who has very little inclination towards same sex attachments and would like to have that corrected by proper counseling. Homosexuals say, “once gay, always gay.” Show me where on the continuum of sexual development that is a PROVEN SCIENTIFIC FACT

  2. Turkish Guy 26 Sep 2013, 12:05pm

    Homosexuality may not be a mental illness but it distorts psychology and causes mental illnesses

    1. Wrong on both counts, aside from the nonsensical quality of “distorts psychology.” Care to explain that one? Come to think of it, care to explain the idea that homosexuality “causes” mental illness? Because there’s not a reputable psychologist in the world who agrees with that.

    2. bobbleobble 26 Sep 2013, 12:16pm

      If homosexuality caused mental illness then 100% of us would have mental issues. What causes gay people to have proportionately more mental health problems is people who marginalise us, bully us and treat us as second class citizens. Homophobia causes mental illnesses not homosexuality.

      I’m not sure what distorts psychology means, I suspect not much.

    3. Guglielmo Marinaro 26 Sep 2013, 12:17pm

      “… but it distorts psychology…”

      WTF is that supposed to mean – if anything?

      1. He’s a religious tw*at so of course nothing he says will make sense

      2. It’s drivel – He’s just trying to stroke his ego by asserting insight and authority, while possessing neither.

    4. Michael 2912 26 Sep 2013, 1:08pm

      It’s attitudes like yours that cause misery. Imagine living in a society that sends out the message that being gay is abnormal and inferior and that being heterosexual is natural and the only way to be natural. That’s the message that’s trumpeted at us from infancy and which is reinforced continually. Things are better than they were but damage is still being done. Quite why the proportion isn’t higher is a wonder to me. My hope is that you never have kids who are gay it who in any way “deviate” from your mean-spirited “norm”.

    5. Jock S. Trap 26 Sep 2013, 3:42pm

      Wrong… that’s called projection.

      It’s not homosexuality that causes mental illness it’s bigoted homophobes like yourself that does….. and then distorts…

      Get an education.

  3. That There Other David 26 Sep 2013, 12:32pm

    As opposed to the 100% of religious people that do have mental health issues, whether they acknowledge them or not ;-)

    1. Black & Gay 26 Sep 2013, 5:46pm

      because all religious people are the same?

  4. bobbleobble 26 Sep 2013, 12:44pm

    There’s a couple of things that have made me wonder about what this research shows. Firstly 40% of LGBT youth believe they have mental health issues but that doesn’t mean they actually do. Self diagnosis is never a good thing.

    Secondly what do straight people aged 13 – 25 believe? We haven’t been provided with that statistic so we don’t know whether this is unusual for that age group. The 1 in 4 stat is I assume the much quoted government statistic that one in four will at some point over their lives actually experience mental health issues (rising to one in three in some reports I’ve seen) so it’s not a good basis for comparison here.

    I have no doubt that gay youth experience worse mental health than their straight counterparts but I just don’t know that this research proves that.

  5. Christopher in Canada 26 Sep 2013, 12:51pm

    So, being more self-aware (and usually smarter and more creative) is now considered mental illness?

    I’d say having to live in a world of pre-programmed sheep is more of a stress than being enlightened enough to know yourself.

    Since when was conformity something to be admired? Oh, right – since the solid coloured zebra stood out from the herd and the lions noticed…

  6. Jan Bridget 26 Sep 2013, 1:16pm

    How are the child and adolescent mental health services Scotland responding to the mental health needs of LGBT young people in Scotland?

  7. http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2007/09/06/the-psychology-of-believing-something-not-true/

    This explains a lot in both why we feel the way we do and how religion spreads its virus

    1. Jan Bridget 26 Sep 2013, 3:10pm

      Interesting article. It has taken centuries to embed homophobia into our six main institutions: religion, medicine, law, media, education and family. It will take a long time to undue this and get our institutions to replace homophobic messages with positive ones. It is my belief that all these institutions need to change before we will see a significant drop in the high levels of mental ill health. We have had huge successes with law over the past couple of decades and the media is coming on board but we have a big journey with the others!

      1. Jan Bridget 26 Sep 2013, 3:16pm

        This is why it is important that public services understand and are able to respond to our needs.

        1. Totally agree Jan, the more positive messages that can be put out there the better. This site needs more positive news for people to absorb. Sadly there is so much hatred out there, it is difficult.

          Thank goodness for people like Lady Gaga who are a beacon of hope and a force for good.

  8. The best ever way of describing the mental health issues for was by reading a book called the velvet rage. It summed things up to a tee!

  9. I have depression and anxiety and have done for quite a large chunk of my short life, although I couldn’t say whether the self-esteem destroying experience that was my teenage years as an LGBT teen played a role in their development for sure!

    All the “main” crazy stuff kicked off around 13, which is the same time I came to accept my sexuality, so there’s no way of knowing for sure as they were both parallel experiences that were stressful in their own different ways.

    I became increasingly proud of my gayness as I became increasingly “anti-establishment” with age though. I’m at a point now where I want to kiss men in public and wear outrageous “gay” clothing JUST to annoy the crusty old squares who try to keep me down!

    Eventually I stopped longing for the approval of society and relished in being a “rebel”. There’s something pretty cool about knowing that every day of your life as an “out” LGBT person is a life of political civil disobedience. Rock and f*cking roll, man.

  10. Neil M U Phelps 27 Sep 2013, 2:53am

    Some years ago during a long analysis with gay analyst Dr Anthony Stevens, he told me that my homosexuality is immature, a failed initiation, and makes me a member of the group of those who haven’t quite made it. Is he right?

  11. 40%??? The number should be higher, because more than 90% of LGBT youth have suffered mental abuse by their homophobic families, school mates and the general anti-gay bigots!

  12. I would be cautious in forming an opinion until I could read all of this research and had the opportunity to assess the survey questionnaire. I counsel gay men of all ages who have mental health issues (depression, low self-esteem, etc) but we cannot always lay the blame at everyone else’s door, the gay community can be very intimidating to many people who have just dipped their toe in the water for the first time (regardless of age) and there is not always the support they need, so they are in a limbo where they feel dissociated and disappointed leading them to a state of despair / crisis. We have come a long way but we are still not doing enough in the ‘gay community’ to support those who find it extremely difficult to find their way and live the live they deserve.

  13. David Tough 29 Dec 2013, 3:12pm

    this is appalling sad despite all the changes in the
    law the UK is still deeply homophobic

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