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Family Rejection as a Predictor of Negative Health Outcomes in White and Latino Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Young Adults

César E. Chávez Institute, San Francisco State University/University of Utah

Rejection by their families translates into significantly poorer physical and mental health outcomes for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) youth, according to this study published in the January issue of Pediatrics.

Young LGB adults ages 21 to 25 who experienced high levels of family rejection during their adolescence were eight times as likely to self-report having attempted suicide, nearly six times as likely to report severe depression, and more than three times as likely to report using illegal drugs and engaging in unprotected sex compared to LGB peers who reported little or no family rejection.

Latino males reported the highest levels of family rejection regarding their sexual orientation during their adolescence.

The authors conclude that a clear link exists between specific parental and caregiver behaviors and negative health problems in LGB young adults, and that counseling and supporting the families of LGB teens can help decrease those risks.

Abstract free online at http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/abstract/123/1/346.

 

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