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Historically, YRBS and other studies have gathered data on lesbian, gay, and bisexual youth but have not included questions about transgender and questioning/queer youth.As that changes and data becomes available, this content will be updated to include information regarding transgender and questioning/queer youth.LGB youth are at greater risk for depression, suicide, substance use, and sexual behaviors that can place them at increased risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).Schools can implement evidence-based policies, procedures, and activities designed to promote a healthy environment for all youth, including LGB students.For youth to thrive in schools and communities, they need to feel socially, emotionally, and physically safe and supported.

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However, some LGB youth are more likely than their heterosexual peers to experience negative health and life outcomes.For example, research has shown that in schools with LGB support groups (such as gay-straight alliances), LGB students were less likely to experience threats of violence, miss school because they felt unsafe, or attempt suicide than those students in schools without LGB support groups.Positive parenting practices, such as having honest and open conversations, can help reduce teen health risk behaviors.Parents who talk with and listen to their teen in a way that invites an open discussion about sexual orientation can help their teen feel loved and supported.Parents should have honest conversations with their teens about sex and how to avoid risky behaviors and unsafe situations. Parents who take time to come to terms with how they feel about their teen’s sexual orientation will be more able to respond calmly and use respectful language.

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