Year: 2017 Source: Crisis.(2016).37(5):361-369. DOI: 10.1027/0227-5910/a000423 SIEC No: 20170031

There is evidence of heightened vulnerability to nonfatal suicidal behaviors among LGBT populations yet a paucity of studies into fatal behaviors. Aim: The specific aim of this article was to identify factors related to suicide in LGBT individuals in Australia. Method: The psychological autopsy (PA) method with a matched case-control study design was used. PA interviews were conducted with 27 next-of-kin of an LGBT person that had died by suicide. Three living LGBT controls per suicide case, matched by age and gender, were also interviewed. Results: The key factors relating to suicide in LGBT people were a lack of acceptance by family and self (reflected in higher internalized homophobia and shame), negative feelings about own sexuality/gender, and dissatisfaction with appearance. LGBT people who died by suicide also tended to go through coming out milestones 2 years earlier than controls. There was a higher prevalence of aggressive behaviors and a more predominant history of physical and sexual abuse. Additionally, there was greater incidence of depression and anxiety and alcohol and substance use disorders. Conclusion: Specific predictive factors for suicide in LGBT populations in Australia were identified, including significantly poorer mental health outcomes and more violence across an array of measures.

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