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NAMI LGBTQ+ Connection Support Group

NAMI LGBTQ+ Connection Support Group is designed for LGBTQ+ individuals living with mental health conditions. We will provide a sense of belonging and a safe space to discuss lived experiences while receiving the support of LGBTQ+ peers trained by NAMI.

By sharing your experiences in an affirming and confidential setting, you gain hope and develop relationships. This group encourages empathy, acceptance and a sense of community.

This is a peer support group that focuses on allowing participants to share their experiences and learn from each other in a safe environment. It is:

  • Free of cost to participants
  • Designed for adults (18+) with mental health conditions
  • Led by peers (people with mental health conditions)
  • 90 minutes long and meets weekly, every other week or monthly
  • No specific medical therapy or treatment is endorsed
  • Confidential

What You’ll Gain

By sharing your experiences in a safe and confidential setting, you gain hope and develop relationships. The group encourages empathy, productive discussion and a sense of community.

NAMI LGBTQ+ Support Group will help you:

  • See the individual first, not the illness
  • Recognize that mental illnesses are medical illnesses that may have environmental triggers
  • Understand that mental illnesses are traumatic events
  • Aim for better coping skills
  • Find strength in sharing experiences
  • Reject stigma and not tolerate discrimination
  • Not judge anyone’s pain
  • Forgive ourselves and reject guilt
  • Embrace humor as healthy
  • Accept that we cannot solve every problem
  • Work for a better future in a realistic way

Online LGBTQ+ Support Groups

ALL SUPPORT GROUPS ARE CURRENTLY MEETING ONLINE

Due to COVID-19, NAMI LGBTQ+ Support Groups will meet online until further notice. View the schedule of online groups here: Online Support Groups.

Penndel LGBTQ+ Support Group

MEETING ONLINE, NO IN PERSON MEETINGS

When? 1st Tuesday of the month from 6:30 - 8:00pm
Where? Reach Out Foundation - 152 Monroe Avenue, Penndel, PA 19047
Duration: 90 Minutes
Map/Directions >>
View full 2020 schedule >>
FREE, NO REGISTRATION REQUIRED

Warminster LGBTQ+ Support Group

MEETING ONLINE, NO IN PERSON MEETINGS

When? 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month from 6:00 - 7:30pm
Where? Warminster Library - 1076 Emma Ln, Warminster, PA 18974
Duration: 90 Minutes
Map/Directions >>
View full 2020 schedule >>
FREE, NO REGISTRATION REQUIRED

How Do Mental Health Conditions Affect the LGBTQ Community?

LGBTQ individuals are almost 3 times more likely than others to experience a mental health condition such as major depression or generalized anxiety disorder. This fear of coming out and being discriminated against for sexual orientation and gender identities, can lead to depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, thoughts of suicide and substance abuse.

LGBTQ people must confront stigma and prejudice based on their sexual orientation or gender identity while also dealing with the societal bias against mental health conditions. Some people report having to hide their sexual orientation from those in the mental health system for fear of being ridiculed or rejected. Some hide their mental health conditions from their LGBTQ friends.

As a community, LGBTQ individuals do not often talk about mental health and may lack awareness about mental health conditions. This sometimes prevents people from seeking the treatment and support that they need to get better.

Prejudice & Stigma

The effects of this double or dual stigma can be particularly harmful, especially when someone seeks treatment.

Often termed “minority stress,” disparities in the LGBTQ community stem from a variety of factors including social stigma, discrimination, prejudice, denial of civil and human rights, abuse, harassment, victimization, social exclusion and family rejection.

Rates of mental health conditions are particularly high in bisexual and questioning individuals and those who fear or choose not to reveal their sexual orientation or gender identity. Though not all people will face mental health challenges, discrimination or violence, many people report less mental well-being and satisfaction.

Suicide

The LGBTQ community is at a higher risk for suicide because we lack peer support and face harassment, mental health conditions and substance abuse. For LGBTQ people aged 10–24, suicide is one of the leading causes of death. LGBTQ youth are 4 times more likely and questioning youth are 3 times more likely to attempt suicide, experience suicidal thoughts or engage in self-harm than straight people. Between 38-65% of transgender individuals experience suicidal ideation.

Family support plays a particularly important role in affecting the likelihood of suicide. Someone who faced rejection after coming out to their families were more than 8 times more likely to have attempted suicide than someone who was accepted by their family after revealing their sexual orientation.

Substance Abuse

The LGBTQ community reports higher rates of drug, alcohol and tobacco use than that of straight people. Major factors that contribute to substance use by LGBTQ people include prejudice, discrimination, lack of cultural competency in the health care system and lack of peer support.An estimated 20-30% of LGBTQ people abuse substances, compared to about 9% of the general population.25% of LGBT people abuse alcohol, compared to 5-10% of the general population.

LGBTQ Youth

LGBTQ young people face fear, hatred and prejudice in school, with friends, in the community and at home, which can lead to higher risks of self-harm and thoughts of suicide. LGBTQ teens are six times more likely to experience symptoms of depression than the general population. Additionally, LGBTQ youth struggle in coming out to family members, friends, classmates and teachers, especially those that are not accepting of the LGBTQ community.

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Become a Member

Join NAMI Bucks County and join a movement to inspire better lives for NAMI Bucks Countyns who are affected by mental illness. With membership, you’ll receive newsletters and updates on mental health news, you’ll be able to engage in discussion groups, and you’ll have the opportunity to support others who are affected by mental illness financially and emotionally.

Get Involved

If you’re not ready to become a member but still would like to support NAMI Bucks County, we welcome and appreciate donations of any value. You'll be supporting others who are affected by mental illness financially and emotionally.

Get In Touch

The families and members of NAMI Bucks County are here to help! We offer understanding to anyone concerned about mental illnesses and the treatment of mental illness. There’s a community here for you, and we’re here to help you however you need it. You will be so very glad that you did!