File under “duh,” but it’s good to see the science confirming [yet again] that what we on the side of equality and humanity have been saying for years about gay teens and suicide is indeed true. Kids do better when they have a supportive network of family and friends, so that when/if they’re bullied by schoolyard kids and religious bullies, they have rocks to hold onto:
When it comes to protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender teens from considering suicide, a study involving about 250 of them has identified several risks and one major protective factor.
“This is the first data pointing us to where we can act,” study author Brian Mustanski tells Shots. “This is the first study to look at the thoughts and behaviors of suicide. It lets us look at what those predictors are.”
So what stopped death from popping into the participants’ minds? A strong support system of family and friends acted like a protective mental shield against perilous thoughts. The teens who knew they could open up to their parents about their problems seemed to fare better by having a positive influence on their thoughts.
Guess what doesn’t count as “support?” Religious bigotry masquerading as care and concern for kids “involved in the homosexual lifestyle.” That’s sort of the opposite of “supportive friends and family.”