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'Long-term health benefits' for LGBT youth who come out during high school

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'Long-term health benefits' for LGBT youth who come out during high school

Coming out is one of the greatest challenges faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth. Although it is known that being out carries risks of bullying and victimization for teens, a new study finds that coming out during high school is associated with improved outcomes in the long run.

The new study, which is published in the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, was led by University of Arizona (UA) researcher Stephen Russell, who analyzed data gathered by the Family Acceptance Project, a "research, intervention, education and policy initiative" established by San Francisco State University to promote the well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) children and adolescents.

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/289301.php

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I suppose that "coming out" at any age is very hard to do, regardless of what one is coming out as, and that doing this is like no longer living a lie (if you will) and certainly has mental and physical health benefits. Looking back I wish I'd been able to encourage my sons more to come out as themselves - regardless of their sexuality or gender or anything else. Shoulda, coulda, woulda... myself included.

I think the article and study are great as they underscore this and may help parents, educators, and others realize that it does far more damage to keep people in the closet. Fortunately, too, while kids can and are cruel at times it seems to me that there is much more acceptance these days for uniqueness than when I was in school. Thanks for posting it here.

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It is far healthier to address issues earlier than later! And, by that, I mean ANY issues!!

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Monica, I agree with you 100%. As hard as it may be, the sooner the better. I can testify from personal experience. :)

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Something that comes to mind for children coming out is send them to private school or home school them. Both of these are much better than public school and can argue that there are advantages and disadvantages for both of these options.

Many hear private school and think it cost a lot and is true but there are private schools out there that have funding for less fortunate. When my children were ready for high school I was making less than half of what I make now. The school is on the East Coast and I was heading back there for other reasons and made an appointment with people at the school, gave them my reasons for free tuition and landed it which included room and board. Cost for each of my kids, $20,000 per year, no cost to me. Sure there could be kids there that cause problems but not at the private school I picked. Neither of my children fail into the category discussed here but the point is there are options and no matter what private school is better.

My ex-sister-in-law (currently a friend) home schooled her daughter and entered into college just fine.

We as parents can shelter children so far and need to balance this with real world experiences.

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