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  • 1. Mental Health in the LGBT Community Tiara Dicks, Kristen Gruenfelder, Alexa Pace, and Em Riveles
  • 2. Why this topic? Education: We want to learn more about our sexualities and the sexualities of others!
  • 3. How can sexual identity affect mental health? (a survey) • Asked our online friends to fill out a survey • This survey was not limited to only people who identify with the LGBT community • We were curious to hear the viewpoints of those who identify as straight as well
  • 4. Tiara Dicks, Kristen Gruenfelder, Alexa Pace, and Em Riveles
  • 5. Demographics
  • 6. Demographics 11 respondents, 31% 5 respondents, 14% 7 respondents, 20% 5 respondents, 14% 3 respondents, 9% 2 respondents, 6% 2 respondents, 6%
  • 7. Real Life Responses
  • 8. Introduction Now we will begin exploring mental health in different aspects of the community.
  • 9. + Psychoanalysis and Homosexuality By: Alexa Courtney Pace
  • 10. + Two Theories of Homosexuality:  Essentialist theories: argue that homosexuality is an inborn; innate trait, likely due to biological or developmental processes  Constructionist theories: indicates that homosexuality develops overtime and is most likely due to social forces.
  • 11. + Theoretical Bias  Homosexuality was seen as a "borderline condition”  An individual who did not regard it as a problem to be cured was, "understood to be maintaining a perverse denial of their pathology”  Disturbance in the mind or in development
  • 12. +
  • 13. +  There is more to a person than just their sexual orientation. Homosexuality is not the problem, it‟s society‟s attitudes towards Homosexuality.  When we do not understand something, we fear it and judge  Just because you understand it, does not mean it does not exist!
  • 14. + We need to do something!  Heterosexism: discrimination and prejudice against gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgenders by heterosexual people  E.g., Don‟t Ask Don‟t Tell, Media, Workplace  Disclosure was not considered appropriate  Discrimination and dealing with homophobia can affect a person's health.
  • 15. +
  • 16. +
  • 17. + Treating Homosexuality…  Conversion therapy (also known as reparative therapy) is a range of treatments that aim to change sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual  Aversion therapy is a form of psychological treatment in which the patient is exposed to a stimulus while simultaneously being subjected to some form of discomfort. This conditioning is intended to cause the patient to associate the stimulus with unpleasant sensations in order to stop the specific behavior (homosexuality).  Aversion therapy was previously considered as a treatment for homosexuality, but since 1994, the American Psychological Association (APA) has declared that it is a dangerous practice and does not work.
  • 18. +
  • 19. + Religion and Homosexuality  The Abrahamic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have traditionally forbidden sodomy, believing and teaching that such behavior is sinful.
  • 20. +
  • 21. + Society and Homosexuality  Antihomosexuality: in the culture forces gay people to constantly think about „their‟ proper place. (1996, p. 233).  We must recognize the crucial importance of the experience of self-discovery for someone who senses that his or her sexual desires are different from those of peers.  People confuse gender with sexual orientation. It does not mean you are any less of a man if you are homosexual and vice versa for Lesbians.
  • 22. + Society and Homosexuality Continued…  It is tempting to find ourselves thinking about the apparent „feminity passivity‟ of gay men or the „masculinity‟ of a lesbian.  Stereotypes
  • 23. + Klein Sexual Orientation Grid  “It is when the categories of “male” and “female” are seen as absolute when sexuality is more complex than that.  Klein developed a multidimensional grid for describing sexual orientation.
  • 24. + The Reclassification of Homosexuality  The American Psychological Association (APA) declassified homosexuality as a mental illness in 1973  Evelyn Hooker  Demonstrated homosexuality is not psychopathological  Although our society is becoming more open to the complexity of sexual orientation, we know that depression, suicidal feelings, and self-harm is considerably higher among members of the LGBT community than among heterosexuals (Chakraborty et al., 2011).  This could be due to internalized feelings of homophobic attitudes that leads to them feeling depressed.
  • 25. Bisexual Mental Health by Em Riveles
  • 26. Bisexuality is defined as romantic and/or sexual attraction to both men and women. • Bisexuality falls under the umbrella term of “homosexuality”, which used to be considered a mental illness • Even though homosexuality is no longer considered a mental illness, people identifying as such are called a “sexual minority” • Any type of minority is subject to experience stigma and prejudice
  • 27. Numbers • Bisexual women report significantly higher rates of depressive symptoms than both lesbian and heterosexual women • LGB adolescents are twice as likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual counterparts • LGB students are three and a half times more likely to self-harm
  • 28. Heteronormativity assumes that all members of society are attracted to members of the opposite sex. • Even today, this is a rarely known concept. • Heteronormativity places pressure on LGB (Lesbian, gay, and bisexual) people to conform to society’s norms • In classrooms, LGB students are often exposed to heteronormative and even homophobic ideals, leading to feelings of isolation and oppression • These feelings are associated with depression, anxiety, chronic stress, eating disorders, and substance abuse
  • 29. “I’M NOT STRAIGHT!” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZu1eDVtvHw A YouTube video by KristenCorpse
  • 30. Heteronormativity (continued) • The process of “coming out” (revealing ones sexual orientation) to the family of someone who is LGB can be very difficult because often they are inherently assumed to be straight • This can lead to significant emotional distress and mental illness such as depression and anxiety • It is extremely important for LGB issues to be talked about to decrease stigma
  • 31. Problems with Research and Stigma • In much of today’s research, all sexualities under the LGBTQ umbrella are clumped together; this makes it difficult to access information about specific orientations. • Much stigma surrounds the bisexual orientation. Many people believe that bisexuality does not actually exist, calling sexuals “confused” “greedy” or “sluts”
  • 32. Transgenders and Mental Health By: Alexa Pace
  • 33. When Biological Sex is Unclear • Intersexual: someone who is anatomically somewhere along the continuum between a male and female • Hermaphrodite: individual is born with both ovarian and testicular tissue or a combination of an ovary and testicle into one structure = ovatestes – Only 350-450 known cases worldwide
  • 34. Gender Identity • Gender identity: our intuitive sense of what it means to be a man or woman
  • 35. Masculinity and Feminity
  • 36. Transgender • Transgender: is an umbrella term to describe people who believe their biologically assigned gender is a false or incomplete description of themselves. • Transsexual: is an individual whose sexual identity is opposite the one assigned at birth.
  • 37. Transgendered continued… • Gender reassignment involves transsexual men and women seeking to transition from their gender of birth to the opposite gender permanently • Transvestites: an individual who acts in the manner of a person of the opposite gender – Cross-dressers – Sexual orientation varies
  • 38. Transgender at 11: Listening to Jazz • https://www.youtube.com/results?search_qu ery=transgender
  • 39. Comparisons of Mental Health in Heterosexuals vs. Homosexuals Kristen Gruenfelder
  • 40. Comparisons of Mental Health in Heterosexuals vs. Homosexuals Kristen Gruenfelder
  • 41. Statistics
  • 42. SELF HARM: 52% of homosexual youth 35% of heterosexual youth
  • 43. SELF HARM: 52% of homosexual youth 35% of heterosexual youth
  • 44. DEPRESSION: 42% of homosexual youth 29% of heterosexual youth
  • 45. SUICIDAL IDEATION: 44% of homosexual youth 26% of heterosexual youth
  • 46. SUICIDAL IDEATION: 44% of homosexual youth 26% of heterosexual youth
  • 47. How is same-sex experience associated with changes in mental health between adolescence and young adulthood?
  • 48. Homosexuals experience greater levels of mental health problems in adolescence
  • 49. Transition later on? Stigmatized role as “straight,” Which is psychologically harmful!
  • 50. Women have it worse! Harsher mental health changes due to minority status.
  • 51. Men are treated more violently. Sexual minority males face greater stigma than adult females.
  • 52. Same sex experience in adolescence AND adulthood = worse mental health!
  • 53. Same-sex couples Vs. Heterosexual couples
  • 54. In general, married couples are usually healthier than those who aren’t married.
  • 55. Same sex partners > single Same sex partners < straight partners
  • 56. Gay men are 61% more likely to have poor mental health
  • 57. Gay women are 46% more likely to have poor mental health
  • 58. IN GENERAL, RACE SHOWED NO VARIABILITY. BUT…
  • 59. THE EXCEPTION: BLACK WOMEN Black women living with their female partners had worse mental health than black women in any other non-married status.
  • 60. No significant difference between the United States and the rest of the world.
  • 61. What are the reasons for greater mental health problems in the LGBT community?
  • 62. Reasons: 1. Lack of acceptance >> bullying 2. Pain from pre and post “coming out” 3. Same-sex relationships are [on average] less stable and shorter lived 4. Social pressures – “manly” or “womanly” duties not fulfilled 5. Inadequate mental health services
  • 63. Inadequate Mental Health Services
  • 64. LGBT Health Services from Community Perspective
  • 65. • Discrimination common among providers and other clients • Providers attributed to their sexual orientation • Have to educate providers about basic sexual identity and gender issues which is difficult when already emotionally distressed • Providers question their identity “If you have children, how can you be a lesbian?”
  • 66. Suggestions for Improvement by LGBT Community • Providers should receive training on how to ask questions in a respectful way • Knowing that some staff are openly a part of the LGBT community • Offer more groups specific to LGBT persons
  • 67. LGBT Mental Health Services From Provider Perspective
  • 68. • Agencies have difficulty serving the needs of transgender clients -Not a lot of training on transgender issues and lack of policy knowledge on how to treat transgender clients appropriately • There is a need for coordination of services within and outside of mental health agencies • Lack of effectiveness in connecting LGBT clients to other LGBT individuals and groups
  • 69. • Lack of available resources and professional training opportunities to specifically address the mental health needs of LGBT individuals -Providers have to seek out training themselves since it is not a part of standard training programs
  • 70. Suggestions for Improvement by Providers • LGBT clients would feel more comfortable or welcomed at agencies that have openly LGBT staff members
  • 71. • Providers suggest making LGBT mental health a priority in training programs and be included in education curricula at a level to reach all mental health professional • 3500 medical students across North America were surveyed in which 36% stated LGBT curricula's at their schools were fair and 34% rated it poor or very poor
  • 72. • Instructions should be provided on the distinctions between sexual orientation, sexual behavior and gender identity as well as how to ask about each one • All providers should learn basic terminology used to describe members of LGBT communities
  • 73. Conclusion Members of the LGBT community are faced with mental illness more often than those who identify as straight.
  • 74. Conclusion As counselors, let’s tackle this issue together!