According to a new research letter gay and bisexual youth have a high risk of suicidal behavior. Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), gay, lesbian, bisexual and questioned high school students in the United States were at a higher risk of suicide than their straight counterparts.
Date from the 2015 National Youth Risk Behavior Survey found that 40% of LGBT youth has considered suicide, 35% has planned suicide, and 25% have attempted suicide. Compared to heterosexual teens only 15% considered, 12% planned and 6% had attempted suicide.
Just fearing how their family or friends may react to their sexual orientation can isolate youth and profoundly harm their mental health,” sociologist Anna Mueller, from the University of Chicago, told Science News.
In a national survey 16,000 youth were questioned, 89% of the participants identified as heterosexual, 2% as gay or lesbian, 6% bisexual, and 3.2% were questioning or unsure. Bisexual teens were the most at risk, with 46% saying they has considered suicide in the past year, according to the study.
Senior study author John Ayers, a researcher at San Diego State University told Reuters "LGBT teens face staggeringly high suicide risk, and we must recognize LGBT teen suicide is a national public health crisis and bring extraordinary resources to bear to address the crisis."
One issue the study didn't address was asking about respondents' gender identity, meaning date for transgender people aren't available.