Suicide risk factors among trans feminine individuals in Lebanon

Rachel L. Kaplan, Simon Nehme, Frances Aunon, David de Vries, Glenn Wagner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Transgender women are disproportionately affected by high rates of depression and suicide attempts. It is therefore important to identify factors that influence suicidal risk, particularly in the Middle East, where little research has examined the mental health of transgender women. We examined risk factors associated with suicide attempts among 54 trans feminine individuals in Beirut, Lebanon. Data were collected using interviewer-administered questionnaires and were analyzed using bivariate statistics. Twenty-five (46%) participants reported having ever attempted suicide. Among them, only one participant had received some kind of counseling in response to the attempted suicide. Low general social support, low social integration, and low support from peers were significantly associated with a history of attempted suicide, as were being more open about transgender identity in public and any hormone use (past or current). These findings suggest that progression in gender transition can have unintended consequences related to mental health and suicide risk, while social support systems can mitigate the impact of mental health problems. Some of these findings mirror other contexts around the globe and can inform mental health services for trans feminine individuals in Lebanon, the greater Middle East region, and other international settings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-30
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Transgenderism
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Lebanon
  • MENA
  • Middle East
  • mental health
  • suicide
  • trans feminine

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