Suicide danger amongst LGBTQ+ adolescents in Canada

Suicide is recognised as one of many main causes of demise for younger individuals (WHO, 2021). It’s broadly recognised that adolescents who establish as LGBTQ+ are at higher danger of self-harm and suicide than cisgender, heterosexual friends (Berona et al., 2020; Garofalo et al., 1999; Hatchel et al., 2019; Jadva et al., 2021; Taliaferro et al., 2019). Analysis by Miranda-Mendizabal et al., (2017) has indicated that sexual orientation minorities have been 2.26 occasions extra more likely to wrestle with suicide than heterosexual adolescents.

Given the constant stage of suicide danger amongst LGBTQ+ adolescents globally, it is vital for particular international locations or areas to know the chance inside their space. For instance, a survey performed in affiliation with a British LGBTQ+ charity (Stonewall) discovered that top numbers of LGBTQ+ adolescents endorsed self-harm (65.3%), suicidal ideas (73.8%) and had made a suicide try (25.7%) (Jadva et al., 2021). Nevertheless, in different international locations such statistics are unknown.

Subsequently, the first purpose of a current Canadian paper was to evaluate the chance of suicidal ideation and try amongst LGBTQ+ adolescents aged between 15-17 years, in Canada, utilizing nationally consultant knowledge.  It’s thought that LGBTQ+ youth are at higher danger of suicide on account of minority stressors (Meyer, 1993), with one key stressor being the discrimination that individuals from a minority group are more likely to expertise. Subsequently, a secondary purpose of the examine was to discover whether or not the connection between suicide and being LGBTQ+ was moderated by experiences of bullying.

Suicide is the second leading cause of adolescent death in Canada, yet the risk of suicidal ideation and attempt among LGBTQ+ youth is not known.

Suicide is the second main explanation for adolescent demise in Canada, but the chance of suicidal ideation and try amongst LGBTQ+ youth just isn’t identified.


Knowledge was pulled from the Canadian Well being Survey on Youngsters and Youth (2019), which is performed with all adolescents aged between 12-17 years whose consent or parental consent is obtained. Following Article 2.2. of the Tri-Council Coverage Assertion: Moral Conduct for Analysis Involving People (TCPS-2); the authors didn’t search moral approval for this examine. Beneath this text, moral approval just isn’t required if knowledge is publicly accessible or if the person of curiosity has no sensible expectation of privateness.

As solely adolescents aged between 15-17 years have been requested about sexual attraction and suicidality, the authors used an age-stratified sampling methodology to incorporate solely knowledge from these on this age-range. The important thing measures of curiosity included two binary variables contemplating suicidal ideas prior to now 12 months and suicide try throughout lifetime; self-reported sexual attraction (males solely; largely males; equally females and males; largely females; solely females; not sure); and bullying and cyberbullying over the previous 12 months. Those that weren’t interested in the alternative gender have been labeled as sexual minorities. Gender variety was outlined by self-reported gender being completely different to that of intercourse assigned at delivery.

The principle evaluation consisted of a number of modified Poison regression analyses to calculate danger of suicidal ideas and makes an attempt of LGBTQ+ adolescents in contrast with cisgender, heterosexual friends; controlling for sociodemographic elements and stratifying by intercourse assigned at delivery. Additional evaluation explored the mediating position of bullying and cyberbullying was explored in these associations.


The ultimate pattern for this examine was 6,800 adolescents; 99.4% of whom have been cisgender and together with 0.6% gender numerous younger individuals. Of those adolescents, the bulk have been heterosexual (78.6%), with 14.7% being interested in a number of genders, and an additional 4.3% being not sure of whom they have been interested in. Solely 68 females and 54 males being completely interested in their very own respective genders.

Firstly, sexual minority adolescents have been extra more likely to report suicidal ideas (14%) and makes an attempt (6.8%) than heterosexual friends (10.4%; 4.6% correspondingly). This was even higher for gender numerous adolescents, who have been considered 5 occasions extra more likely to expertise suicidal ideation, and seven.6 occasions extra more likely to try suicide than cisgender counterparts.

It was discovered that bullying and cyberbullying partially mediated the connection between suicide and being LGBTQ+. Nevertheless, this was solely related when adolescents have been gender numerous or those that have been interested in a number of genders.

Canadian LGBTQ+ adolescents are more likely to struggle with suicidal thoughts and behaviours than their cisgender, heterosexual peers.

This examine means that Canadian LGBTQ+ adolescents usually tend to wrestle with suicidal ideas and behaviours than their cisgender, heterosexual friends.


This knowledge suggests that suicide danger is bigger in Canadian LGBTQ+ adolescents. That is according to the current literature on this space. The authors concluded that:

transgender and gender-nonconforming adolescents have been at markedly greater danger of each suicidal ideation and suicide try than their cisgender friends.

Whereas bullying and cyberbullying partially mediated this relationship for gender numerous younger individuals and people interested in a number of genders, the character of the bullying was not examined. Subsequently it stays unclear whether or not this presents proof of minority stress throughout the pattern.

It appears that transgender and gender diverse adolescents in Canada are at most risk of suicide.

It seems that transgender and gender numerous adolescents in Canada are at elevated danger of suicide.

Strengths and limitations

Kingsbury and colleagues (2022) produced a precious examine which gives a transparent overview of nationwide suicide danger in adolescents aged between 15-17 years. Through the use of knowledge from the Canadian Well being Survey on Youngsters and Youth (2019), a excessive variety of LGBTQ+ individuals have been captured providing a sensible illustration of suicide danger on this minority group.

Whereas this examine captured a big pattern, few gender numerous adolescents have been recognized (0.6%). One subject is that “transgender” was outlined by evaluating assigned intercourse at delivery and self-reported gender. This will likely miss those that establish with different gender numerous labels, (e.g. agender, non-binary), or who really feel unable to self-report a special gender for no matter purpose. It’s potential that gender numerous adolescents are unrepresented and a higher understanding of suicide danger on this group might be achieved.

It might have been useful if the survey had requested youthful individuals about their sexual attraction, gender identification, and whether or not they had skilled any ideas or behaviours regarding suicide. Earlier literature has indicated that sexual attraction will be recognized at earlier ages (Calzo et al., 2006), as can gender-incongruence (Sorbara et al., 2020). Equally, suicide also can happen in youthful populations (Soole et al., 2015). If this had been constructed into the survey design, a a lot clearer understanding of suicide danger in LGBTQ+ adolescents could have been achieved.

This study had a large sample of adolescents, however only a low number of these were gender diverse.

This examine had a big pattern of adolescents, nonetheless solely a low variety of these have been gender numerous.

Implications for apply

A definite implication of this examine is to advertise the necessity of LGBTQ+ tailor-made suicide prevention methods in Canada, confirming that LGBTQ+ adolescents usually tend to be at higher danger than cisgender, heterosexual friends. Such programmes may embody gender-affirming take care of gender numerous adolescents, which has been related to reductions in suicidality (Sorbara et al., 2020), in addition to concentrate on bullying and cyberbullying danger amongst LGBTQ+ adolescents.

In Canada, suicide prevention strategies should have a focus on LGBTQ+ youth, which acknowledge additional stressors which these adolescents face.

In Canada, suicide prevention methods ought to have a concentrate on LGBTQ+ youth, which acknowledge further stressors which these adolescents face.

Assertion of pursuits



Major paper

Kingsbury, M., Hammond, N. G., Johnstone, F., & Colman, I. (2022). Suicidality amongst sexual minority and transgender adolescents: a nationally consultant population-based examine of youth in CanadaCMAJ194(22), E767-E774.

Different references

World Well being Organisation. (2021) Suicide [fact sheet]. Retrieved from

Berona, J., Horwitz, A. G., Czyz, E. Ok., & King, C. A. (2020). Predicting suicidal habits amongst lesbian, homosexual, bisexual, and transgender youth receiving psychiatric emergency companies. Journal of psychiatric analysis, 122, 64-69.

Hatchel, T., Polanin, J. R., & Espelage, D. L. (2019). Suicidal ideas and behaviors amongst LGBTQ youth: meta-analyses and a scientific overview. Archives of suicide analysis, 25(1), 1-37.

Garofalo, R., Wolf, R. C., Wissow, L. S., Woods, E. R., & Goodman, E. (1999). Sexual orientation and danger of suicide makes an attempt amongst a consultant pattern of youth. Archives of pediatrics & adolescent drugs, 153(5), 487-493.

Taliaferro, L. A., McMorris, B. J., Rider, G. N., & Eisenberg, M. E. (2019). Danger and protecting elements for self-harm in a population-based pattern of transgender youth. Archives of suicide analysis, 23(2), 203-221.

Jadva, V., Guasp, A., Bradlow, J. H., Bower-Brown, S., & Foley, S. (2021). Predictors of self-harm and suicide in LGBT youth: The position of gender, socio-economic standing, bullying and faculty expertise. Journal of public well being (Oxford).

Meyer, I. H. (1995). Minority stress and psychological well being in homosexual males. Journal of well being and social habits, 38-56.

Calzo, J. P., Antonucci, T. C., Mays, V. M., & Cochran, S. D. (2011). Retrospective recall of sexual orientation identification growth amongst homosexual, lesbian, and bisexual adultsDevelopmental psychology47(6), 1658.

Sorbara, J. C., Chiniara, L. N., Thompson, S., & Palmert, M. R. (2020). Psychological well being and timing of gender-affirming care. Pediatrics146(4).

Soole, R., Kõlves, Ok., & De Leo, D. (2015). Suicide in youngsters: a scientific overviewArchives of suicide analysis19(3), 285-304.

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