Sexual minority youth victimization and social support: the intersection of sexuality, gender, race, and victimization.

Published: January 1, 2012

Abstract

In comparison to heterosexual youth, sexual minority youth are more likely to experience victimization. Multiple studies have connected anti-gay prejudice and anti-gay victimization to negative outcomes. Research shows that social support may protect sexual minorities from the harmful effects of anti-gay victimization. However, rates of victimization and the negative outcomes linked to sexual identity within the sexual minority community have been relatively unexplored. Using data from three years of statewide data from heterosexual and sexual minority adolescents in grades 9-12, this study examines victimization, substance use, suicidality, and access to social support by sexuality. Results indicate that sexual minority youth are at increased risk for victimization, substance use, suicidality, and social isolation compared to their heterosexual counterparts. Results also indicate that there is very little bivariate difference within the sexual minority community. Multivariate results indicate differences among sexual minorities’ experiences with victimization and substance use.

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