Survey finds widespread feelings of fear and rejection among LGBTQ teens

A new survey finds significant anxiety and fear among teenagers who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer.

The survey findings, released Tuesday, are based on the answers of roughly 12,000 youths ages 13 to 17 who responded to an online solicitation by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and other advocacy groups. Researchers say they reveal the depth of challenges that LGBT teens face.

At home, at school, in social circles and communities, these teens are experiencing high levels of anxiety, feelings of rejection, and fears for their safety, the survey says.


‘‘Despite the change in social attitudes, they’re still struggling,’’ said Ryan Watson, an assistant professor at the University of Connecticut, who is one of the researchers. ‘‘We still see alarming disparities and experiences, disheartening mental health problems and self-esteem issues.’’

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The report said nearly three-quarters of the teens surveyed said they have been threatened verbally because of their sexual identity. Ninety-five percent reported having trouble sleeping.