‘My family wouldn’t accept me… I have been in conversations when they often slag people off for being LGBT’
A report released earlier this year reveals 1 in 3 LGBT 14-18 year olds in Ireland have attempted to take their own lives.
The report indicates this is due to ‘bullying, rejection and pressures to hide who they really are.’
One anonymous respondent of the nation-wide survey said: ‘I was having nervous thoughts about whether I was going to come out to my parents or not.’
‘And the thought of it got too much and I decided to cut myself to get some sort of release from those thoughts. I still haven’t come out to them,’ he said.
The statistics also reveal that LGBT young people are also twice as likely to self-harm, and have four times as much severe stress, anxiety and depression than non-LGBT youth.
The report states: ‘67% of LGBT young people witnessed bullying of other LGBT students and over 50% of them personally experienced bullying.’
‘One in four missed or skipped school to avoid negative treatment due to being LGBT,’ the report revealed.
Tomorrow marks the start of #StandUp2016 week in Ireland.
This week is devoted to standing up to LGBT bullying and providing resources on acceptance and equality.
BeLonG To is the national organisation for LGBT young people in Ireland, aged between 14 and 23 and their mission is to provide safe and fun services to LGBT young people.
Moninne Griffith, Executive Director at BeLonG To said: ‘Despite the great progress we have made in Ireland with equality legislation and marriage equality, most LGBT students are still facing very tough situations in their schools – rejection, bullying and pressures to hide who they really are.
‘This has devastating impacts on their levels of self-harm and suicide,’ she said.
Richard Bruton TD, Ireland’s Minister for Education said: ‘I encourage every post primary school in Ireland to get involved in this excellent initiative to empower students to support their LGBT+ friends.’