Thursday, January 31, 2008

DO BLACK GAY PEOPLE HAVE MORE MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS?


DO BLACK GAY (LGB) PEOPLE HAVE MORE MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS?

Not according to a 2007 study conducted at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health.

In what is being billed as the first population based study of its kind among lesbian, gay, and bisexual populations, blacks and Latinos do not have more mental disorders than whites. Based on the theory that stress related to prejudice would increase risk for mental disorders, researchers typically expect that black lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals face prejudice related to both racism and homophobia and therefore would have more disorders than their white counterparts.

Contrary to this expectation, however, the Mailman School study found that black lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals had significantly fewer disorders than white individuals. Latinos had a prevalence of disorders similar to whites."

"These findings suggest that black lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals have effective ways to cope with prejudice related to racism and homophobia" noted Ilan H. Meyer, PhD, associate professor of clinical Sociomedical Sciences at the Mailman School of Public Health and principal investigator of the study.

The study of 388 white, black and Latino New York City residents aged 18 -- 59 who identified themselves as lesbian, gay, or bisexual is the first population-based study of its kind to examine the prevalence of mental disorders among black and Latino, versus white, lesbians, gay men, and bisexual individuals.

By contrast to the findings about mental disorders, more black and Latino gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals than whites reported a history of serious suicide attempts. "Because these suicide attempts occurred at an early age, typically during the teenage, we can speculate that they coincided with a coming-out period and were related to the social disapprobation afforded to lesbian, gay, and bisexual identities," Dr. Meyer said.
More on Study Here>>>>

Note: It would be interesting to see what the outcomes would be for Transgenders or people who don't identify as gay, lesbian or bisexual, yet engage in homosexual sex.

Joe

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1 comment:

Jonathan Batiste of BCA's Black Spectrum, M.A. in Psychology said...

We probably do have more mental issues than other races. Just look at the post-traumatic stress of Katrina victims, most of whom are AfAm. However, many of us have EMOTIONAL problems. These stem from stifled emotions, forgotten/missed life dreams, and outside pressures from other black people and other racial groups. We like to "stack" or "layer" our problems further compounding the issue. This is what leads to more serious mental issues down the road. When we as Black People begin to recognize, understand, deal with, and heal from our emotional issues, we will continue to deal with more serious social and psychological problems.