Addiction And The LGBTQ Community

Why So High? Addiction And The LGBTQ Community

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Addiction And The LGBTQ Community – LGBTQ individuals have a far higher rate of addiction than the general population, but why so high? Here’s one major reason that rears its ugly head throughout the lives of many individuals in this community.

Increased isolation issues:

Feelings of isolation and loneliness are known factors in terms of men and women turning to substance use in order to alleviate unwanted feelings and thoughts. In doing so there is also a possibility of use turning into abuse. It is a given that the LGBTQ community have more reason than other groups to follow such a path.

Home life:

Many come from a home life and family background that simply cannot accept a person being anything other than heterosexual. This leaves LGBTQ individuals isolated because they are unable to explain their feelings and thoughts to parents or siblings and must bear their burden in silence.

School life:

Studies have indicated that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students suffer increased levels of bullying during their educational years. This can be in the form of verbal taunts or physical violence. Whichever type of violence they are subject to it is understandable that it affects them.

School years and puberty give more than enough problems on their own. Adding feelings of being an outcast or isolated because of your sexuality can cause deep angst and despair.

Work environment:

There are still far too many homophobes in the work place and life can be made very tough for someone who “is not normal”. Once again, this rejection and harassment can leave a person feeling very lonely, dispirited and isolated.

Struggling to find a community of friends:

Addiction And The LGBTQ Community – Contrary to popular belief it is not that easy for many of the LGBTQ community to find their own settled community of friends. This can lead to lonely days and nights where feelings of isolation are magnified.

A solution for many is to have a drink or use illicit drugs with the intention of easing the mental pain that isolation can bring. Both options will help in the short-term, but the following morning as well as feeling queasy those problems will still be there.

This can lead to further drinking or drug taking and if this pattern continues then dependency looms.

LGBTQ nightlife scene can lend itself to excess:

The alternative to staying home and feeling lonely is to get out on the town and visit one of the clubs that you know will be full of like-minded people. This is a positive way to go, but anyone with a potential for overdoing things needs to be wary. The alcohol may flow too freely and new people you meet may well invite you to share one drug or another. If this is allowed to become a regular occurrence then dependence will come knocking.

Isolation needs to be countered:

Isolation is just one of several reasons why so high a proportion of the LGBTQ community become addicted. This makes it all the more important for individuals concerned to bear in mind there are people with the same attitudes and sexuality as you out there willing to help and organisations that will welcome you.

Spread your net wide, look for local clubs and activities that include like-minded people and do not allow alcohol or drugs to become a crutch that is required to help you limp through life.

CLICK HERE for your Free Confidential Assessment from our LGBTQ Specialist.

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Anne -

Anne Lazarakis joined the DARA Rehab team from Sydney, Australia. She writes about addiction and mental health on a global, local and community level. She also relays personal accounts of substance abuse and recovery through the stories of our clients, their families and our own team members.

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