Exploring Cross-Sectional Predictors of Suicide Ideation, Attempt, and Risk in a Large Online Sample of Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Youth and Young Adults

Laura E. Kuper, Noah Adams, Brian S. Mustanski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations


Purpose: Rates of suicide ideation and attempt appear to be particularly high in the transgender and gender nonconforming (TGNC) population, yet little is known about which factors are the most salient contributors for TGNC young people and how these contributors vary across suicide-related outcomes. Methods: Within the largest sample of TGNC young people to date (N = 1896; ages 14-30), we examined the contribution of demographics (age, assigned sex, gender identity, sexual orientation identity, race/ethnicity, and socioeconomic status), minority stress (gender-related affirmation, gender-related self-concept, victimization, and gender-Affirming medical treatment desire/access), social support (from family and friends), and depressive symptoms in the cross-sectional prediction of three suicide-related outcomes: past-year attempt, past-year ideation, and a composite measure of suicide risk. Results: Each set of factors explained significant variance in each outcome; however, only several predictors remained significant in each of the full models. Gender-related victimization and depressive symptoms were independent predictors for all three outcomes. Additional predictors varied across outcome. Age, male identity, sexual orientation-based victimization, and friend support were associated with suicide attempt. Age, queer identity, gender-related self-concept negativity, and family support were associated with suicide ideation, and pansexual identity and gender-related self-concept negativity were associated with positive suicide risk screen. Conclusion: Prevention and intervention efforts aimed at building support and positive self-concept, decreasing victimization, and treating depression are likely to partially reduce suicide ideation and attempt in TGNC adolescents and young adults. Comprehensive interventions with younger adolescents are particularly critical.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-400
Number of pages10
JournalLGBT Health
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 1 2018



  • gender nonconforming
  • minority stress
  • suicide
  • transgender

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Urology

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