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Crisis. 2015;36(6):416-23. doi: 10.1027/0227-5910/a000340.

Suicide Risk Among College Student. The Intersection of Sexual Orientation and Race.

Author information

1
1 Pace University, Counseling Center, New York, NY, USA.
2
2 Pace University, Department of Psychology, New York, NY, USA.
3
3 Yale University, Child Study Center, New Haven, CT, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Research on young adults in the general population has identified a relationship between sexual minority identification and risk for suicide. Differential rates of suicidal ideation and attempts have also been found across racial and ethnic groups.

AIMS:

This study examined risk for suicide among university students, based on membership in one or more marginalized groups (sexual minority and racial minority identification).

METHOD:

Data were collected from first-year college students (N = 4,345) at an urban university. Structural equation modeling was employed to model a suicidality construct, based on which a "risk for suicide" category system was derived. Chi-square and logistic regression analyses were then conducted to estimate the relationship between the background variables of interest and suicide risk.

RESULTS:

Students who identified as lesbian, gay, or bisexual (LGB) were associated with higher suicide risk than their heterosexual peers. Students of color were slightly less at risk than their heterosexual peers. However, LGB students of color were associated with elevated suicide risk relative to heterosexual peers.

CONCLUSION:

Results indicate that belonging to multiple marginalized groups may increase one's risk for suicide, though these effects are not simply additive. Findings highlight the complexity of the intersection between marginalized identities and suicidality.

KEYWORDS:

college students; ethnicity; sexual orientation; suicide risk

PMID:
26648229
DOI:
10.1027/0227-5910/a000340
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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