Identifying Distinct Subgroups of Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Youth for Suicide Risk: A Latent Profile Analysis

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Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of the study was to identify profiles of lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) youth who are at risk for suicidal behavior. Method: Data were collected through the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (N = 2,738). We used latent profile analysis to create identity profiles using variables associated with suicide, including bullying, alcohol use, poor grades, electronics use, and sleep hours. Results: The LPA revealed a 6-class solution. Class 6 represented the highest risk profile with the highest scores in alcohol, bullying, poor grades, electronics use, and the least sleep and were 17 times more likely to attempt suicide compared to class 2 (the lowest-risk class). Classes 1, 3, 4, and 5 had a mixture of both high and low risk mean scores across the variables, with class 3 showing the strongest relationship to suicide (7 times more likely than class 2). Conclusion: Because high-risk classes in our study had multiple factors contributing to associations to suicide, programming aimed at attenuating youth suicide among LGB youth may benefit from addressing multiple issues simultaneously (e.g., substance use and bullying). This would be a departure from more traditional programs for LGB youth which are predicated on one specific risk behavior, such as coping with bullying or substance use separately.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-200
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
Volume67
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2020

Keywords

  • LGB
  • Risk
  • Suicide
  • Youth

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