LGBTQ adolescents and young adults raised within a Christian religious context: positive and negative outcomes

Angie L Dahl, Renee V Galliher
Journal of Adolescence 2012, 35 (6): 1611-8
Religious contexts have traditionally been understood as protective for a variety of psychosocial health outcomes. However, the generalizability of these findings to youth who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ) is questioned due to denominational teachings on same-sex attractions and sexual behavior. Eight adolescents (15-17 years) and 11 young adults (19-24 years) who identify as LGBTQ raised in Christian religious affiliations (16 participants raised in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, 2 participants raised Catholic and 1 participant raised Presbyterian) participated in individual in-depth interviews, journal writings, and focus groups to provide greater insight into the lived experiences of LGBTQ individuals raised within a Christian religious environment. Findings suggest the religious context is related to both positive and negative outcomes. Eight themes are explored using participant's own words and experiences. Directions for future research and implications are discussed.

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