Mental

LGBTQ+ and Mental Wellbeing

Why do the LGBTQ+ community suffer disproportionately with mental health problems? Find out about some reasons why this might be the case, and discover what WorkLife can do to help.

Leah Heath

Wellbeing Advisor

June 6, 2022

It may not be a shock for you to read that statistically, the LGBTQ+ community suffers from worse mental health than the general population.

It’s important to note that being LGBTQ+ does not cause these problems. There are several reasons why those of us with LGBTQ+ identities might suffer, which are mainly due to outdated attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community. This is most likely to do with things like homophobia/biphobia/transphobia, discrimination and a lack of understanding resulting in social isolation, exclusion and rejection.

A place where this might be particularly difficult to deal with is at work. We spend much of our time working, and work should be a place that we feel welcome and supported at, but too often this is not the case. Our mental wellbeing partners at Thrive have found that 56% of LGBTQ+ employees are uncomfortable about being open about their sexual orientation in the workplace, illustrating their worries about possibly subjected to discrimination.

At WorkLife by OpenMoney we want to challenge this, and ensure that our actions are helpful to our members who identify themselves as part of the LGBTQ+ community.

Firstly, while we understand the barriers that stop people from being so, we think that it is important to demonstrate how being open about our sexuality can actually be positive for our wellbeing. Embracing our identities can lead to increased confidence, improved relationships with friends and family, a sense of community and a feeling of freedom due to self-acceptance. Many LGBTQ+ people say that coming out is very liberating and has become the first step to living authentically as themselves.

There is no right or wrong way to become more open about our sexual identities, and it is important that we trust our feelings and do it when we are ready. At WorkLife, we hope that the members of our community understand that we are welcoming of anyone and their identity, as just like anyone else, LGBTQ+ people perform better at work when they can be themselves and feel valued for who they are.

If you area WorkLife member, you will have access to our mental wellbeing partners’ app –Thrive. Thrive is a place where any WorkLife member can access valuable tips and techniques to improve their mental wellbeing, and this June they are focusing on the help that they can give to our LGBTQ+ members.

The team at Thrive give the WorkLife community access to real counsellors, who we can chat to via the app, you can even request which counsellor that you would like to speak to, if you feel most comfortable with a particular one. Thrive also contains a simulated Cognitive Behavioural Therapy programme, guided meditation and deep muscle relaxation exercises for those of us who would rather take this journey solo.

The beauty of Thrive is that you can wholly dive into it, or experience it 5 minutes at a time! You can use it as much, or as little as you like! But one thing is for certain, if you don’t have it downloaded, you will never know. Visit your WorkLife portal for more information on this benefit.

  

Resources

If you are LGBTQ+ and need further assistance, please checkout the link below where mental health charity, Mind, have listed numerous avenues where you might find help.

LGBTIQ+ mental health support - Mind