Mental health and being LGBTQ+

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Some of us identify ourselves as LGBTQ+ which means we may be lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer or questioning - or we may define our gender and sexuality in other ways.

Those of us who identify as LGBTQ+ are more likely to experience a mental health problem than the wider population. This is because LGBTQ+ people experience bullying, rejection, stigma and discrimination which too often lead to low self-esteem, depression, anxiety and isolation.

At Mind, we believe we should all look out for one another’s mental health, especially when we know that some of us suffer higher levels of discrimination and isolation. Talking about these issues and seeking support where and when we need it are important ways that LGBTQ+ people can manage their mental health.

On this page, you can find out more about our work with LGBTQ+ communities, and read and watch personal experiences of LGBTQ+ people with lived experience of mental health issues.

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We'd like to say a big thank you to our friends at Mind Out who helped us make the following videos and blog possible.

Christine's story

"If you’re gay and you’re suffering from a mental health issue… things seem to be a lot darker."

When Christine's wife died, she faced discrimination from her GP and struggled to find the help she needed.

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Ed's story

“I needed somewhere where I could be open about being trans and be open about mental health.”

Growing up and struggling with his gender identity, Ed faced a series of mental health problems. Transitioning from female to male helped but it was only part of his story.

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Regan's story

I’ve not got mental health issues because I’m a transsexual, it’s because of a lack of understanding and awareness.

Regan blogs about her experience of transitioning and how she struggled to find the acceptance and support she desperately needed.

Read Regan's story

Ben's story

“I didn’t feel safe amongst the other people there and being gay… and isolated, it heightened my anxiety.”

When Ben found himself homeless, he had to deal with a system that didn’t understand his needs and how this impacted on his mental health.

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Sheila's story

“I held it all in because in some ways I thought I could cope at a weird sort of level. I thought this was my coping – not living.”

Even though Sheila understood her sexuality, she struggled with her mental health and her feelings of not being whole.

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Our LGBTQ+ work

We're delivering a number of public events to help everyone feel they are respected and supported by others, with full regards to their sexual orientation or gender identity.

We're also working with both voluntary and statutory service providers to make sure they are able to offer non-judgemental and genuinely inclusive mental health support for those of us who identify as LGBTQ+.

You can download our new good practice guide for service providers here

To learn more and find out how to get involved, please contact Alessandro: a.storer@mind.org.uk

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