Research and Action for Youth Health

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Suicidal behaviour among lesbian, gay and bisexual youth in British Columbia: Risk and protective factors - Abstract



Bell, K. A. (2011). Recent research has found elevated rates of victimization experiences which have been linked to suicide attempts both in the general population and among lesbian, gay and bisexual youth. The current study evaluated reports of suicidal behaviour, risk factors (e.g., physical victimization, harassment, and discrimination) and protective factors (e.g., school connectedness and safety, family connectedness and self-esteem) and compared the rates by gender and sexual orientation. Logistic regressions compared whether higher risk factors and lower protective factors predicted suicide attempts across sexual orientation categories. The results demonstrated that lesbian, gay and bisexual youth reported higher levels of suicidal behaviour and risk factors, and lower rates of protective factors. Victimization predicted suicide attempts and higher rates of protective factors were associated with lowered odds of a suicide attempt. The importance of interventions related to protective factors among lesbian, gay and bisexual youth and clinical and systemic implications are discussed.