Many lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people are adversely affected by multilayered discrimination, marginalisation and stigma. Risk factors for their mental health include violence, bullying or rejection and discrimination from school, family, friends, and workplaces and from society more generally. Risk factors for intersex people can also include rejection and harassment, being forced to conform to gender norms, or pain and scarring from childhood genital surgeries or forced hormone use (Haas et al. 2011).
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people are helped in their recovery by their families, by educational institutions and workplaces, by their friends and partners, and by mainstream services and community-specific support and community groups. Mental health services that are culturally competent can also be instrumental in assisting recovery (National LGBTI Health Alliance 2012).
In demonstrating considerable resilience lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people share a similar narrative with people who have experienced mental health issues, particularly in how they have overcome self-stigma arising from identity issues, loss of self-esteem and discrimination.