A Look at Mental Health in the LGBTQ+ Community

As I wrote last week, it’s extremely difficult to understand some of the nuances and differences of mental health outside of my own cishet male experience. In some cases, it’s near impossible. But in looking at looking at statistics and data, it’s also clear that certain groups and demographics of people are at a higher risk of mental health issues. Last week, I wrote about the male demographic because it was Men’s Health Week. This week, as we reach the end of Pride Month, I wanted to dive into some statistics and data surrounding the LGBTQ+ community. And though it won’t be news for our siblings in that community, it presents a harsh reality as we look to understand how LGBTQ+ persons are affected by mental health disorders and mental illness.

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Why Anyone Can Help Support a Movement

*Breathes deeply*

Okay, friends. I think I’ve calmed down (at least a little) from my earlier post this week. While I hope that some of you checked out some of the links, there was also a part of me that hoped you didn’t need to go through my list of anti-racism resources because you’ve been doing your own research. But I digress! In other parts of the reading, research and learning I’ve done this week, I’ve also found that there are pockets of people who aren’t sure “how they can help” – or maybe don’t think they can help at all. I want to address those people because I think anyone can help support this movement. And I know that because of my experience with a different cause – mental health*.

*Please note. There are MANY differences between these causes. In fact, there are a few CLEAR differences in particular. If you need details, hit me up in the comments! But sometimes understanding can come from finding common ground.

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The Real Neat Blog Award

Something exciting happened this week! I was nominated by Caz over at Mental Health From The Other Side for the Real Neat Blog Award! I love following my UK bloggers, and Caz’s blog that shares her experience not only personally but professionally is a treat to read and an inspiring story!

I hope you can pop over and give her posts a read. As someone who doesn’t work in the healthcare world, I think there’s a ton of value to people who experience mental illness while also having to be in that professional setting.

The Real Neat Blog Award Rules

Here are the rules:

  1. Accept the nomination and thank the person who nominated you, leaving a link to their blog.
  2. Answer the 10 questions
  3. Nominate your chosen bloggers and send them a link to let them know they’ve been nominated.
  4. Ask your nominees to participate by answering the same questions.

Now that I’ve accepted the nomination and thanked the awesome blogger who nominated me, time to answer the questions!

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Defining Success During A Pandemic

When someone asks what it means to be successful, the same words come up often. Wealth, fame, finding love, living a comfortable life. There so many seemingly obvious answers to this question, and sometimes it seems objective in the way we define success. Whether or not you agree with these answers (personally, I don’t), that definition isn’t relevant right now – and we need to get used to that for the time being.

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Supporting Children And Their Mental Health Right Now

Since this blog is more based on personal experience than anything else, I’ve always felt more comfortable writing about what I know. Whether that’s something I’ve experienced or an experience that’s been shared with me, understanding what someone is thinking or feeling has always been important to me as a basis for a post. But I’ve been reading more news about how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting children who now have to stay at home for school, and it’s got me thinking a lot about kid’s mental health during this difficult time.

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COVID-19’s Impact on the Mental Health Community

At this point in the coronavirus pandemic, the general public is well aware of who is most at risk to be hit hardest by COVID-19. Older adults and people who have underlying health conditions are those that we need to keep a close eye on and we need to make sure they’re getting all the care they need and maintain an extremely safe distance. But as we’ve learned, other groups are also at risk to be hit hard by this pandemic – including those who suffer from mental illness.

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Understanding Where We’re All Coming From

There are so many new difficulties we’re facing these days. Trouble sleeping. Finding things to do while we’re staying at home. Making sure we can handle feeling more alone than usual. It’s a whirlwind just to prepare mentally, physically and emotionally to live in a world that’s very different from what we’ve come to know. With that preparation comes learning new things about people, systems and everything else. And it can be extremely frustrating.

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Dealing With New Difficulties and Frustrations

A few months ago, one of my posts focused on how to sleep with anxiety for those out there who struggle. Since sleep and mental health have a direct connection, I thought there were people out there who, like me, have tremendous anxiety around bedtime. Even then (in January), I knew I wasn’t alone. Now, I’d guess that almost all of us are having trouble around bedtime as we end another day of living through a pandemic (“Day ??” is my go-to phrase) and try to sleep before starting another one. And though bedtime is more difficult for all of us, I’m here to tell you that it’s okay to feel that way.

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Finding Our Sources of Strength

This hasn’t been a good week for me. I’ve had trouble controlling my emotions and keeping myself in check, and it hasn’t been easy. I constantly feel like I’m on the verge of breaking down, and I’m doing my best to avoid it if I can. I’ve had days, weeks and months like this before, so it’s nothing new. But being pushed to your limits physically, emotionally or mentally is exhausting. Fortunately, I know what to do when I feel this way: lean on my sources of strength.

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