Homosexually active gay and bisexual young adult males are over-represented in the male youth attempted suicide problem, and the same would apply for gay, lesbian, and bisexual youth of colour. An over-representation of these youth is also predicted in the suicide problem. It has been demonstrated that gay and bisexual male youth, who form about 10% of the male population, are about 6-times more at risk for suicide attempts than heterosexual youth, and would account for about 40%, maybe 50%, of male youth suicide attempters.

These males, along with heterosexual males who were sexually abused also form about 90% of the young adult male suicide attempters. Therefore, suicidologists must begin asking and answering an important question: Why have most studies of youth suicide problems not been concerned with identifying sexual orientation, and child sexual abuse in their research work? Is this how truly scientific work should be done? Is it acceptable for suicidologists to have generally avoided doing anything to understand and help gay, lesbian, and bisexual youth despite the taboo nature of their sexuality? Was it ethical for mental health professionals until recently to have deemed all gay and lesbian people to be mentally disordered, and to have behaved accordingly? Has it been ethical, given the facts of the case, for suicidologists to have generally ignored GLB issues? Why did this happen?

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25 Nov 1995