Most lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (or LGBTQ for short) youths are just happy and try to thrive during the time of their adolescent years. Going to a school that creates a safe and supportive learning environment for all students and getting care and acceptance from parents are most important. This helps all youths achieve good grades and maintain good mental and also physical health. Therefore, some of the LGBTQ youths known to me more likely compared to their heterosexual peer groups to experience such difficulties in their lives and school environments, such as violence. If you are concerned about your sexuality or that of your teenage child, you can seek professional advice with free online counseling.
What Schools Can Do
“Mental health issues can be caused by a combination of biological, psychological and environmental factors, and can have a minor or major impact on a person’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors.” Christina L. Gmyr, LMHC, NCC said. So for youths to thrive in their schools and their communities, they must feel socially, emotionally, and physically safe, as well as being supported. A positive and comfortable school climate can be associated having a decreased depression, substance use, suicidal feelings, and also an unexcused school non-appearance among all the LGBQ students.
To extend for a help on promoting the health and also the safety among all the LGBTQ youth, which schools can implement the following policies and practices:
- Encourage respect for all students and disallowing bullying, violence against the students around the campus, and any form of harassment.
- Encourage student-led and student-organized school clubs that promote a safe, welcoming, and accepting school environment (e.g., gay-straight alliances, which are school clubs open to youth of all sexual orientations).
- Encourage school district and school staff to develop and publicize trainings on how to create safe and supportive school environments for all students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, and encourage staff to attend these trainings.
- Ensure that health curricula or educational materials include HIV, other STDs, or pregnancy prevention of information that is coherent to all the LGBTQ youth (like, to ensure the curricula and or the materials to be used inclusive the language and or terminology).
- Facilitate access to community-based providers who have experience providing health services, including HIV/STD testing and counseling, to LGBTQ youth.
What Parents Can Do
“Your environment, both your social and natural surroundings, can greatly impact how you feel.” Marjie L. Roddick, MA, NCC, LMHC said. To be more supportive and caring, parents must talk openly towards their teen on any problems and/or concerns regarding their life and be very watchful of their behaviors that will indicate that their child was now a victim of any type of bullying or any violence. If bullying, depression, and violence is being suspected, parents should make and take an immediate action about this, working with all of the school personnel, seek free online counseling, and also on other adults within the community.
In many cases like this, parents will no longer let their teens be just in their home. In other any situations, stress or conflict within the home may cause some of the youths to become withdrawn. As a result, LGB youths are more at risk of becoming homeless compared to their heterosexual friends.
Ways Parents Can Influence the Health of Their LGB Youth
Provide support. Parents who take the time to come to terms with how and what they feel towards their young ones’ sexual orientation will probably to respond more calmly and then use respectful languages when communicating to their teens. Parents must develop and share common goals within their teen, like healthy habits and doing good in school.
Stay involved. Parents who make an effort to know their teen’s friends and know what had their young ones is doing may possibly help their teens to stay safe, feeling loved, and being cared for.
Talk and listen. Parents who talk with and listen to their teen in a way that invites an open discussion about sexual orientation can help their teen feel loved and supported. Parents must always have honest conversations towards their teens especially about sex, about how they will going to avoid certain risky behaviors and high-risk situations. “Be supportive and let them know it is not that you think something is wrong with them, but that you want them to have some help with their current challenges. Sometimes, people who are depressed want help but don’t know how to get started.” Vara Saripalli, PsyD said.
Be proactive. Parents can access many organizations and online information resources such as free online counseling to learn more about how they can support their LGB teen, other family members, and their teen’s friends.
Check out this post for more information: http://nazfoundint.com/health-advice-gay-teens/