Is “LGBTQ” Driving Rising Teen Mental Health Disorders?

Dressed teens ponder suicide over gender confusion

In the most privileged, affluent country in the history of the world, our young people are experiencing a sharp rise in mental health problems and suicide attempts.

What could be more ironic? America’s kids should be happy, healthy, wholesome, brave, virtuous, respectful and grateful. Instead, many are tormented and traveling down treacherous roads that will lead to further instability, physical risk and long-term unhappiness. And spiritual darkness is consuming many of them.

And it is surely no coincidence that there’s also a sharp rise in teens professing “LGBTQ” identities.  As those disorders increase, so do teen struggles. Or perhaps it’s the opposite—  too many of our children are unstable for lots of reasons, and then gravitate to sexual/gender dysfunction. Yet too many schools adamantly refuse to see the connection and roll back the blatant promotion of these behaviors.

The Centers for Disease Control just released a report of its latest Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) with a summary of results for the last ten years. The trends are horrifying.

Some problems can be attributed to the COVID shutdowns but the truth is, the pandemic merely revealed the instability of America’s populace, and our kids suffer as a result of mom/dad/family disorder.

The YRBS samples a representative segment of 9th  to 12th graders every two years in public, private and some Catholic schools.

In 2021 (the latest year for which results are available), 10% of female high school students attempted suicide and 42% of high schoolers reported being so sad and hopeless for two weeks in a row that they stopped doing their usual activities. CDC reports that overall, virtually every indicator of poor teen mental health rose between 2011 to 2021.

Girls report a higher incidence of mental health issues. You would think with the laser focus on the rights of women that girls would feel more hopeful than ever. Perhaps feminism is not the answer after all. Of course, any faithful believer could tell us that. Feminism brings more discontent because it suppresses the best of womanhood (the authentic, biological kind).

Let’s look at the students who specifically in this survey identify as “lesbian, gay, bisexual or unsure.” Unfortunately, the questionnaire asks teens to put these sin labels on themselves, and that’s bad enough (identifiers for gender confusion are not part of the current results.) Yet these student categories  could be helpful if understood and applied correctly.

Almost 70% of students in a same sex relationship reported feelings of sadness or hopelessness. And on virtually every other risk factor surveyed, the “LGBQ” group reported higher risk behaviors than their heterosexual peers.  

Almost 25% of this group attempted suicide. There is likely a fair amount of overlap with the 10% of females reporting suicide attempts.

More “LGBQ” students responded “yes” compared to their heterosexual peers to questions such as having ever had sex; being less likely to use a condom during sex; having four or more sexual partners over their lifetime so far; marijuana use; electronic vapor use; current alcohol use; having ever used illicit drugs; ever misused prescription opioids; being threatened or injured with a weapon at school; not going to school because of safety concerns; being electronically bullied; or being bullied at school.

At higher levels this group also reported being forced to have sex; experiencing sexual violence by anyone in the past year; experiencing persistent feelings of sadness and hopelessness; seriously considering attempting suicide; made a suicide plan; attempted suicide; was injured in a suicide attempt; and experienced unstable housing in the last 30 days. They said they were less likely to feel connectedness to people at school.

Then let’s look at another alarming indicator: the rise in the numbers of  teens identifying as a “sexual minority” (the term CDC uses).The latest figures for this are from the 2019 report. It showed 15.7% of  teens identify as “lesbian, gay, bisexual or unsure.” The largest group among these was “bisexual.” From anecdotal evidence, it’s fair to assume this percentage has risen to an even higher level in 2023.

This picture becomes even more dismal in looking at young adults just after high school. Recent Gallup research reports almost 20% of Gen Z Americans  identify as “LGBTQ.” Our youth have been sold sexual misbehavior and we are now reaping its rotten fruits. In the Gallup survey, the Gen Z group contained 1.9% who called themselves “transgender.”

The CDC report assumes the “LGBQ” identifiers in the YRBS are a separate biological group, referring to them as a “sexual minority,” perpetuating the false narrative that people are born this way. This “public health” agency fails to address that elephant in the room: no one is born homosexual, bisexual, “non-binary” or born in the wrong sex body. There is no evidence supporting this claim and a wealth of evidence disputing the inborn narrative but revealing developed desires, which can (and should) be undeveloped, for optimal health and well-being.

That well-documented option – the hope for change –is not presented to students by the CDC and seldom in public schools. The hard-nosed, reputation-guarding “LGBTQ” activist community continues to maintain that attempts to change sexual orientation or gender identity should be banned (propped up by phony testimony from the likes of deviant Sam Brinton).  Cooperating with the sexual authoritarians, some states and communities have enacted these immoral bans.

The good news is that courts are beginning to toss out these bans as discrimination, listening to plaintiffs who disclose the fabricated framework underlying these tyrannical laws.

The CDC’s blatant “LGBTQ” activism in our nation’s schools should also be exposed and ended because of its obvious civil rights violations (not to mention the refusal to actually “follow the science” and the failure of “gay gene” research).

Back to the teens in the YRBS. For years, many of us have been saying that the poor risk factors reported by “LGBQ” identifying students is not, as the CDC claims, the result of “stigma” and disapproval by family and friends.

While that certainly may be a sad reality for some, the truth is that the kids who label themselves in this way already have emotional problems preceding the sexual/gender misbehavior and that largely explains their experimentation. These lost kids are flailing their arms, trying to find an anchor. Sexual or gender confusion are not the answer, even though many teachers and classroom lessons today tell them it is. Parents need to speak up before your child’s life becomes the next one captured by such destructive influences.

One positive element measured in this survey was the level of monitoring by parents in a student’s life and unsurprisingly, the teens who reported more parent involvement were less likely to have these mental health struggles.

Let’s keep praying, speaking out to stand up against the destructive promotion of sexual and gender distortion, and together, seek the best outcomes for our kids.

Photo: Mayo Clinic

Linda Harvey

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About the Author

Linda Harvey
“Linda Harvey became a Christian over 20 years ago after a youthful affinity to liberal politics and causes. She held executive positions in the advertising and public relations field, primarily in health care and insurance. In 1995, she founded Mission America and began to write, broadcast, and publish Christian conservative commentary. She is an author and hosts a radio show in Ohio originating from the Salem Media station in Columbus, and writes for,, and other websites including the flagship site for her ministry, . She is a graduate of Miami University (Oxford, Ohio) and is a wife, mother of two, and grandmother of three." Linda Harvey Mission America Website: Host, WRFD: