LGBTQ+ Mental Health

This page will help you find out more about how sexuality and mental health can be related, the additional challenges many LGBTQ+ people face that can impact mental health & the specialised support available for people who identify at LGBTQ+.

What does LGBTQ+ stand for?

LGBTQ+ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer or questioning. The plus is added to include other gender identities and sexualities.

To find out more about the huge range of labels people use to express their gender identity and sexuality, as well as many other terms relating to all things LGBTQ+ you can visit Stonewall’s Glossary.

Understanding the relationship between being LGBTQ+ & Mental Health

Being LGBTQ+ is not a mental illness

Being LGBTQ+ is not a mental illness & does not stop you from living a happy & healthy life. Unfortunately, however, currently in the UK LGBTQ+ people are more likely to experience mental illness, due to discrimination, homophobia, transphobia & a lack of representation & acceptance.

Hate Crime

1 in 5 LGBTQ+ people will be the victim of hate crime each year. The risk of being the victim of a crime based solely on your sexual or gender identity (or perceived identity) can have a profound impact on your mental health & wellbeing.
Find out more

Being an ally

If you don't identify as LGBTQ+ yourself but support LGBTQ+ people's rights you are an ally! It is important to be an active ally which means putting your beliefs into action & doing things to help tackle discrimination and speak up for LGBTQ+ rights.
Learn how to be an active ally

"That's So Gay"

Words like ‘gay’ being used out of context creates a stigma around being LGBTQ+. As well as being upsetting & offensive, these words can cause internalised homophobia, shame, low self-esteem & poor mental health.

Watch this video to see how being gay has affected Ollie Alexander (actor & lead singer of the band Years & Years).

To hear more LGBTQ+ people’s experiences of the relationship between their sexuality and mental health visit:
https://www.time-to-change.org.uk/category/blog/lgbtq

Watch this video to hear Ed’s experience of how being Trans affected his mental health growing up. 

This video was created by the mental health charity Mind. Mind run a national helpline for anyone who identifies at Trans to receive confidential emotional mental health support. Visit Mindline Trans+  to access this support.

To find out about the other work and support services Mind offer visit their website: www.mind.org.uk

Support for LGBTQ+ People

If you identify at LGBTQ+ or are questioning your gender or sexual identity – that’s great! You might not need any support – but if you do, you can get support for how you are feeling from all the same services and people mentioned on the home page. You might also benefit from some specialised support from people who understand what it is like to be LGBTQ+, if so, you can visit the following websites:

MindOut – mental health service run by and for lesbians, gay, bisexual, trans and queer people: https://mindout.org.uk/get-support/mindout-online/

LGBT+ Switchboard – online chat, email & phone line for anyone considering issues around their sexuality and/or gender identity: https://switchboard.lgbt/how-we-can-help

Breakout Youth – social and support groups for LGBT+ young people aged 11-25 in Hampshire: https://www.breakoutyouth.org.uk/services/

Mermaids –  Information & advice for transgender, non-binary & gender diverse young people & their families. They run a webchat, text & phone helpline aimed at Trans youth up to and including the age of 19, their families and professionals working with them. Find out more here: https://mermaidsuk.org.uk/contact-us

Mindline Trans+ – National helpline for anyone who identifies at Trans to receive confidential emotional mental health support: https://bristolmind.org.uk/help-and-counselling/mindline-transplus/

Galop – provide support to LGBT+ people who have experienced any form of hate crime (insults, online abuse, threats and violence) because of their sexuality or gender identity. For more information & to access their helpline visit:  http://www.galop.org.uk/

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