Homophobic or transphobic discrimination and bullying can often lead to mental health issues for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or intersex (LGBTI+).
How therapy can help
Getting help with issues you may be struggling to deal with on your own is one of the most important things you can do.
Some therapists specialise in LGBTI+ issues.
They can help you with:
- difficulty accepting your sexual orientation
- coping with other people's reactions
- feeling your body does not reflect your true gender (gender dysphoria)
- low self-esteem
- suicidal thoughts
- hostility or rejection from family, friends or your community
- fear of violence in public places
Do not suffer in silence. You should get help as soon as you feel the need. It's never too late or too soon to get help, no matter how big or small your problem might seem.
You could benefit from getting help if you:
- feel tired or lack energy
- feel tearful
- shut yourself away from people
- no longer want to do things you usually enjoy
- use alcohol or drugs to cope with feelings
- harm yourself or have thoughts about self-harming
- have thoughts about taking your own life
If you're struggling to cope right now, call the Samaritans on 116 123. They offer a safe place for you to talk about whatever's on your mind at any time. The Samaritans are available 24 hours a day.
Speak to your GP
Speak to your GP about how you are feeling. They will know what help is available and can help you decide which treatment is best for you.
When discussing your situation, try to be as honest as possible so they can find the best support for you.
The following groups provide general information and support for the LGBTI+ community:
The Switchboard offers listening, support and information to all areas of the LGBTQIA community and to their families, friends and allies.
Gay Project provides help and advice to gay men.
Out West offers a helpline for accepting and dealing with sexuality.
The Transgender Equality Network Ireland (TENI) provides a transgender family support line.