A report supported by the Trevor Project has found that just one supportive, compassionate adult in the life of an LGBTQ youth reduces the chances they will attempt suicide by a whopping 40 percent.
Most past studies have looked at how the support or lack of support of parents can affect their LGBTQ children. This report instead looked at how just one supportive adult, whether related or not, can dramatically change a life.
Any supportive adult makes a difference!
A total of 34,808 youth took part in the survey, with 25,896 included in the final sample. Of these, 20,202 had disclosed their sexual orientation to their patents, a different family member, a teacher or guidance counselor, or a doctor or healthcare provider.
To continue the study, a follow-up question asked how much they were accepted by those they had come out to. This was then compared to these same subject’s suicide attempts or suicidal ideation in the past year.
Over 27% who did not have a supportive adult in their life reported an attempted suicide in the last year, compared to just 17% among those who did have adult acceptance.
Suicide rates are high among LGBTQ youth and suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people overall. LGBTQ youth are four times more likely to consider, plan for, and attempt suicide than their non-LGBTQ peers. According to the Trevor Project, these high rates of suicide and just considering or planning for suicide are because of stressors that are faced only by minority groups.
The Project’s recommendations include more research into ways adults can effectively reach out and help LGBTQ youth.
The Trevor Project also found that over 1.8 million LGBTQ people ages 13-24 considered suicide each year. Most of those — 1.2 million — are just between the ages of 13-18.
If you need help from The Trevor Project, call 1-866-488-7386 or text 678678.