Suicide is a critical public-health issue that remains the leading cause of death among young adults aged 15 to 24. In lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) populations the risk of suicidal thoughts and actions is significantly higher. The effect of natal sex vs. gender identity has not been studied enough as yet. In this study the PubMed-database was searched systematically for articles on the association between gender/sex differences and suicidality. Included were: meta-analyses, systematic and narrative reviews, first-hand observational studies and qualitative studies, published prior to 1 January 2021. Twenty-nine publications were found relevant, the majority on self-harm and suicide attempts and only few on death by suicide. Sexual (29.68%-lifetime) and gender (46.65%) minorities seem more likely to die by suicide than heterosexual/cisgender (14.57%) people. At greatest risk are transgender (56.65%) and bisexual (41.47%) individuals. Most studies reported natal males to be more affected than natal females. The “gender paradox in suicide” does not exist among sex and gender minorities (SGMs), but differences in suicidal behavior exist between the various SGM groups. More research on suicidal behavior among these groups, especially longitudinal research, is necessary.
Cite this article
Volume | Year
Open Access Review
Differences in suicidal behavior in sexual and gender minority populations
1 Department of Health and Well-Being, IDF Medical Corps, Israel Defense Forces, 5262000 Ramat Gan, Israel
*Correspondence: firstname.lastname@example.org (Amir Knaani)
J. Mens. Health 2022, 18(2), 39; https://doi.org/10.31083/jomh.2021.118
Submitted: 3 July 2021 | Accepted: 26 August 2021 | Published: 9 February 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Do men and women differ when it comes to suicidal behavior?)
Copyright: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (LGBTQ) Gender-non-conforming Sexual minorities Gender minorities Sexual orientation Suicidal ideation Suicide attempt Suicide plan Non-suicidal self-injury