LGBTQ teens face a frightening disadvantage in the real world, the CDC says.
As we recently reported, a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that gay and lesbian teens face an astonishing amount of sexual violence. But the report just scratches the surface of just how difficult it is to be LGBTQ, even at a time of growing acceptance of the gay lifestyle and as courts recognize the rights of LGBTQ individuals nationwide.
The report notes that sexual and physical violence against gay, lesbian, and bisexuals is actually growing, and they are two to three times more likely than heterosexuals to experience some form of assault, either physical or sexual. In some cases, the rate was as high as above 20 percent of all individuals, according to the first-of-its-kind report from the CDC.
The report notes that while many “sexual minority” youth are able to cope with the transition from childhood to adulthood, many others struggle due to violence, social rejection and discrimination.
But it’s not just how society treats them that sexual minority youth have to be on the watch for. They are also at a much higher risk for HIV, syphilis and other sexually transmitted disease. Also, lesbians and bisexual females are more likely to have been pregnant than heterosexuals.
The report shows that as much progress as we have seen in the last few decades toward recognizing LGBTQ individuals, they still face a long road ahead.
“While many sexual minority youth cope with the transition from childhood to adulthood successfully and become healthy and productive adults, others struggle as a result of challenges such as stigma, discrimination, family disapproval, social rejection, and violence,” the statement reads. “Sexual minority youth are also at increased risk for certain negative health outcomes. For example, young gay and bisexual males have disproportionately high rates of HIV, syphilis, and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and adolescent lesbian and bisexual females are more likely to have ever been pregnant than their heterosexual peers.”