Measures of Sexual Minority Status and Suicide Risk among Young Adults in the United States.
ABSTRACT Objectives: Multiple measures of sexual minority status are necessary to accurately describe the diversity of attractions, identities, and behaviors in sexual minority populations. We investigated whether four measures of sexual minority status (sexual minority attraction, sexual minority identity, sexual minority lifetime behavior, and sexual minority recent 12-month behavior) were associated with suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts among young adults ages 24 to 34 in the United States. Methods: We analyzed data from Wave IV (2007-2008) of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. We employed logistic regression models in the analysis. Results: Multiple sexual minority status measures had significant associations with increased suicidal thoughts among women and men. Multiple sexual minority status measures had significant associations with increased suicide attempts among women, but not among men. Conclusions: Diverse sexual minority populations are at increased risk for suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts. Multiple measures of sexual minority status should be utilized in future studies of sexual minority status and suicide risk. Suicide prevention programs should ensure intervention is available across diverse sexual minority populations.
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ABSTRACT: Analyses of three waves (6 years) of the National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health data explored the prevalence and stability of sexual orientation and whether these two parameters varied by biologic sex, sexual orientation component (romantic attraction, sexual behavior, sexual identity), and degree of component. Prevalence rates for nonheterosexuality varied between 1 and 15% and depended on biologic sex (higher among females), sexual orientation component (highest for romantic attraction), degree of component (highest if "mostly heterosexual" was included with identity), and the interaction of these (highest for nonheterosexual identity among females). Although kappa statistics testing for temporal stability across waves were significant, they failed to reach acceptable levels of agreement and could be largely attributable to the stability of opposite-sex rather than same-sex attraction and behavior. Migration over time among sexual orientation components was in both directions, from opposite-sex attraction and behavior to same-sex attraction and behavior and vice versa. To assess sexual orientation, investigators should measure multiple components over time or abandon the general notion of sexual orientation and measure only those components relevant for the research question.Archives of Sexual Behavior 07/2007; 36(3):385-94. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To assess past-year prevalence rates of substance use behaviors and substance dependence across three major dimensions of sexual orientation (identity, attraction and behavior) in a large national sample of adult women and men in the United States. Data were collected from structured diagnostic face-to-face interviews using the Alcohol Use Disorder and Associated Disabilities Interview Schedule DSM-IV version IV (AUDADIS-IV). Prevalence estimates were based on data collected from the 2004-2005 (wave 2) National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC). A large national sample of 34 653 adults aged 20 years and older: 52% female, 71% white, 12% Hispanic, 11% African American, 4% Asian and 2% Native American. Approximately 2% of the population self-identified as lesbian, gay or bisexual; 4% reported at least one life-time same-sex sexual partner and 6% reported same-sex sexual attraction. Although non-heterosexual orientation was generally associated with a higher risk of substance use and substance dependence, the majority of sexual minority respondents did not report substance use or meet criteria for DSM-IV substance dependence. There was considerable variation in substance use outcomes across sexual orientation dimensions; these variations were more pronounced among women than among men. Results support previous research findings of heightened risk of substance use and substance dependence among some sexual minority groups and point to the need for research that examines the reasons for such differences. Results also highlight important gender differences and question previous findings indicating uniformly higher risk for substance dependence among sexual minorities. Risks appear to vary based on gender and how sexual orientation is defined. Findings have implications for more effective prevention and intervention efforts that target subgroups at greatest risk.Addiction 06/2009; 104(8):1333-45. · 4.58 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We used data from a nationally representative sample to examine the associations among 3 dimensions of sexual orientation (identity, attraction, and behavior), lifetime and past-year mood and anxiety disorders, and sex. We analyzed data from wave 2 of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions. Mental health outcomes differed by sex, dimension of sexual orientation, and sexual minority group. Whereas a lesbian, gay, or bisexual identity was associated with higher odds of any mood or anxiety disorder for both men and women, women reporting only same-sex sexual partners in their lifetime had the lowest rates of most disorders. Higher odds of any lifetime mood or anxiety disorder were more consistent and pronounced among sexual minority men than among sexual minority women. Finally, bisexual behavior conferred the highest odds of any mood or anxiety disorder for both males and females. Findings point to mental health disparities among some, but not all, sexual minority groups and emphasize the importance of including multiple measures of sexual orientation in population-based health studies.American Journal of Public Health 09/2009; 100(3):468-75. · 3.93 Impact Factor