Keeping it together: Tackling queer mental health challenges

The correlation between LGBTQ people and mental health concerns isn’t just in your head. Queers are not inherently any crazier than the rest of humanity, of course, but studies back ever-growing statistics that a disproportionate number of our community face emotional struggles due to personal and societal circumstances.

Discrimination, acceptance, and other orientation and identity factors can leadto risks including stress, depression and substance abuse. Here are some facts and figures, as well as some tips and resources, if you or yours need help.


LGBT people are twice as likely to experience clinical depression as straight, cis people, and twice as likely to entertain suicidal thoughts or actions.


More than 33% of LGBT people are afraid to access healthcare services because they don’t want to disclose their orientation or gender identity to their practioner.


Across all age groups, LGBT people are seven times more likely to over-indulge in recreational drugs or abuse alcohol.

1 in 5

A quarter of LGBT people report fair or bad general health, versus 1 in 6 of the general population.


Over half of LGBT people aged 18-24 deliberately harm themselves, versus around 10% of young people overall.


More than a tenth of gay men and lesbians, and more than 15% of transgender people are subjected to ‘treatment’ against their will, including hospitalization, aversion therapy and electric shock.



Little Things that Add Up


Eat Right

Sleep on a Schedule


Talk About It


Soak Up & Supplement Vitamin D

Take Breaks & Travel



Local LGBTQ and Allied Resources:

JF & CS Tools for Living

Counseling for Jewish-identified LGBT people


Positive Impact Health Centers

Counseling for at-risk people with HIV


John Ballew, LPC

Three decades experience


Will Mahan

Sex Therapy, Addiction, HIV, Intersectionality, Coming Out


Joshua M. Noblitt, LMFT

Couples, Groups, Sex, HIV and Intersectionality


Brett Rozen, MS, Ld, LPC

Anxiety, Bipolar, Couples, Eating, Grief


Alexandra Tyler, LCSW, CCH

Trauma/PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Self-esteem, Relationships ​

Sources: National Alliance on Mental Illness, Williams Institute

This article originally ran as an info graphic in Q magazine. Read the full issue below: