Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender- Identified Adolescent Depression and Suicide

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Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender- Identified adolescent Depression and Suicide

Physical and emotional abuse within the gay, lesbian and bisexual (GLB) or gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBTQ) community is reoccurring and devastating. The after effects of the abuse, however, can be far more devastating than the abuse itself in some cases. Studies have shown that GLB adolescents are at risk for an increase in mental health issues. Students aged 13–19 years in Boston indicated that gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered (GLBT) students were three and a half times more likely to engage in self-harm and five times more likely to report suicidal ideation than heterosexual students (Almeida, Johnson, Corliss, Molnar, & Azrael, 2009). Research has shown that in order to help prevent depression and suicidal tendencies among adolescents, the following is required: A sense of belonging, the ability to talk and express themselves and their emotions, little to no substance abuse, healthy adolescent-peer, adolescent- parent, and adolescent authoritative relationships, availability of mentors and information on mental health issues such as depression. The following studies demonstrate how not only how often depression and suicidal tendencies or actions occur, but that there are treatments and options available for those that are in need of help to solve or deal with psychological, emotional, and physical problems. General knowledge of what the terms gay, lesbian, straight, bisexual, and transgender can be helpful when researching the depression and suicide rates in GLBT – identified adolescents. The term Gay, as defined in Human Sexuality third edition by Roger R. Hock, is a term used for homosexual, and is often applied to both males and females. Lesbian, also defined in Human Sexuality is a female with a homosexual orientation. Straight can be defined as a male or female having an both physical and emotional attachment and desire for the opposite sex/gender. Bisexual is a term used for a male or female that is both physically and emotionally attracted to both sexes/genders (male and female). Lastly, a transgender is formally defined in Human Sexuality as individuals who do not self-identify as the gender that conforms to their biological sex. The importance of a healthy relationship between young GLB adolescents and their peers, parents, etc. is one that is discussed throughout many articles. Just the same as a heterosexual adolescent, needs guidance and reassurance to be successful in life. Young adults build themselves off of good habits and healthy surroundings. The GLB community is no different; they are bullied just the same and have just as many problems. The only thing that is really different is that they have a title and that they are interested in the same sex. With that interest and curiosity, there will be questions that will lead to that youth going to their peers and asking questions. Without the proper guidance, this youth can be misled. A mislead youth is one of the causes of depression, which then can lead to suicide and/or suicidal tendencies. This guidance can be from any number of places, whether it is at home, from a parental figure, at school, from a teacher or guidance counselor, or at a medical facility, from a certified doctor, nurse, or crisis specialist. In the article, Attachment-Based Family Therapy for Suicidal Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Adolescents: A Treatment Development Study and Open Trial with Preliminary Findings conducted by Gary Diamond et al., the researchers wanted to adapt attachment based family therapy (ABFT) to help suicidal gay, lesbian, and bisexual adolescents. In two different phases, the researchers adapted the ABFT to fit the needs of the study that they were conducting. By the second phase, the researchers were able to take ten suicidal GLB adolescents and put them through an intense twelve week ABFT treatment. During phase two, Adolescents’ report of...
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