Although the internet is most likely the preferred method for pretty much anyone trying to learn more information, whether it be news stories, recipes, or advice from those who have gone through similar experiences, it’s particularly important for LGBT+ youths.
QPOC, an acronym standing for “queer people of color,” are minorities in several ways. Not only are they racial minorities, but they are also members of the LGBTQ+ community. This intersectionality – the ways that things like discrimination and disadvantages overlap if you belong to more than one marginalized group – can be difficult, especially during adolescence.
The variety of social media platforms, the kind of content they show, and who uses them allows people to wear different “masks” depending on what site or app they go on. Facebook has become more family-dominated, so many teenagers feel like they need to filter themselves so their parents, grandparents, and other extended family don’t see everything. Meanwhile, teens may use Instagram to present a seemingly perfect and aesthetic lifestyle to their peers (finstas, on the other hand, make teens feel like they can show their “true selves”).
Mental health and mental illness are almost always tied to marginalized groups, with those who identify as LGBT being no exception. You’re probably somewhat aware of the staggering differences in statistics between LGBT+ people and those who are cisgender and/or heterosexual (if you want to check out the specifics, you can do so here), especially in LGBT youth as they try to navigate these identities.
Nearly half of transgender, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming (GNC) youth between the ages of 3-17 are likely to be diagnosed with a mental illness. Statistics show that at least half of them have received a depression diagnosis, with increased rates of attention deficit and anxiety diagnoses as well.
I started testosterone last month. And while I haven’t noticed any changes, yet, I’m still infinitely grateful. Even though needles scare me, I’m able to bear through it, which is a testament to how important this is to me. If you told me I was on testosterone a year ago, I wouldn’t believe you. This has been a dream for me since sixth grade.
I believe that everyone should embrace who they are, and be proud of their unique traits, but how can I do that if I don’t even know who I am? I always knew that I was just going to be myself, and see where life takes me, but it hasn’t been that simple. I am a good student with great grades, I have amazing friends who support me through anything, my family is wonderful, so what else could I possibly be troubled with?