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J Consult Clin Psychol. 1999 Dec;67(6):859-66.

Depression, hopelessness, suicidality, and related factors in sexual minority and heterosexual adolescents.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School, USA.


In the present study, the researchers examined factors related to depression, hopelessness, and suicidality in gay, lesbian, and bisexual adolescents, compared with demographically similar heterosexual adolescents. Sexual minority adolescents reported greater depression, hopelessness, and past and present suicidality than did heterosexual adolescents. However, when controlling for other psychosocial predictors of present distress, significant differences between the 2 samples disappeared. For past suicidality scores, the effects of sexual orientation were reduced, but still significant, when accounting for the other predictor variables. These results suggest that environmental factors associated with sexual orientation, which can be targeted and changed through prevention and intervention efforts, play a major role in predicting distress in this population.

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