The Relationship Between Sexual Minorities and Mental Health Issues

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Probable Research Problem

The learner is tentatively framing a research question around sexual minorities and mental health. She is struggling whether to focus on mental health stigma with sexual minorities or how their mental health might be impacted by the discrimination they experience due to their lifestyle. The question she formulated is: Do sexual minorities experience mental health issues due to discrimination and stigma from their lifestyle or experiences. Actually, to expand on that, the learner would say: Sexual minorities experiences more mental health issues stemming from the discrimination that they face on a regular basis.

Why This Deserves a Study

It is important to gain a deeper understanding of how sexual minorities are affected by their experience. Ploderi & Tremblay (2015) states that there are studies that report higher levels of mental health issues for this population (Ploderi & Tremblay, 2015). It is important to discover the reasons behind that finding so that we can work to address it. When counseling this population, we need to be aware of the different issues that they face even if we do not identify with them.

Exploring the Literature

Choi & Paul & Ayala & Boylan & Gregorich (2013) declares that in 1 survey they found that 76% of the LGBT population has experienced some form of discrimination (Choi, & Paul, & Ayala, & Boylan, & Gregorich, 2013). The learner finds this interesting because those types of experiences could lead to possible trauma that needs to be worked thru. Processing being discriminated against is difficult enough if they are a minority within another population, and they experience a double stigma.

Bockting, & Miner, & Romine, & Hamilton, & Coleman (2013) says that transgenders especially face stigma and discrimination (Bockting, & Miner, & Romine, & Hamilton, & Coleman, 2013). The learner might be able to break her research question down by specifying under the sexual minority population. She could choose to focus on gay men, lesbians, or transgenders as her literature search gave her some fascinating results. Sheperis & Young, & Daniels (2017) states that the research problem focuses on a problem that needs to be fixed (Sheperis, & Young, & Daniels, 2017).


If this research problem was investigated further, it could help educate the learner on how to work with this population more effectively. It can also bring about more awareness of the issues they face and why they might experience mental health symptoms. The study can help provide possible correlations and lead to other research problems that needs to be explored.


Bockting, W., & Miner, M., & Romine, R., & Hamilton, A., & Coleman, E. (2013). Stigma, mental health, and resilience in an online sample of the US transgender population. American Journal of Public Health. Retrieved from Capella

Choi, K., & Paul, J., & Ayala, G., & Boylan, R., & Gregorich, S. (2013). Experiences of discrimination and their impact on the mental health among African American, Asian, and Pacific Islander and Latino men who have sex with men. American Journal of Public Health. Retrieved from: Capella

Ploderi, M., & Tremblay, P. (2015). Mental health of sexual minorities: A systematic review. International Review of Psychiatry. Retrieved from: Capella

Sheperis, C.J., & Young, J.S., & Daniels, M.H. (2017). Counseling Research: Quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods. (2nd ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.