Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Insidious: Extreme Pressures Faced by Trans People


Studies show that the trans population lives under extreme psychological pressures unseen in even active military personnel. Fifty-five percent of trans people  [1,2] were found to live with social anxiety. Within the general American population, similar types of anxiety are experienced by only 6.8% [3] of the population while these levels of anxiety were found to exist at a rate of 8.2% among military personal. [4]
chart
Levels of social anxiety experienced by population.
This graph compares the social anxiety transgender people feel against levels of social anxiety within the general American population and that experienced by military personnel.
Transgender and gender variant persons are frequently harassed and discriminated against when seeking housing or applying to jobs or schools, are often victims of violent hate crimes, and face challenges in marriage, adoption and parenting rights.
Discrimination and lack of equal civil rights is damaging to the mental health of transgender and gender variant individuals. For example, gender-based discrimination and victimization were found to be independently associated with attempted suicide in a population of transgender individuals, 32% of whom had histories of trying to kill themselves, and in the largest survey to date of gender variant and transgender people 41% reported attempting suicide.
The APA joins other organizations, including the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association, in endorsing strong policy statements deploring the discrimination experienced by gender variant and transgender individuals and calling for laws to protect their civil rights.
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