Teens who were born female but identify as male, and teens who don't identify as exclusively male or female, are most at risk.
Research has shown that transgender adolescents are at greater risk for attempting suicide than cisgender teens, who identify with the gender they were assigned at birth. A new study from the University of Arizona takes a deeper look at who within the transgender adolescent community is most at risk.
UA researcher and lead study author Russell Toomey and his colleagues found that transmasculine adolescents – those who were born female but identify as male – and teens who don't identify as exclusively male or female are at the greatest risk for attempting suicide.
The research, published in the journal Pediatrics, is consistent with findings on transgender adults and could help inform suicide-prevention efforts for transgender youth.
"To date, research on transgender adolescent suicide behaviors has really focused on comparing transgender youth as a whole group to cisgender youth as a whole group, rather than looking for any within-group differences that might exist, which we know might be beneficial knowledge for prevention and intervention efforts," said Toomey, an associate professor in the UA's Norton School for Family and Consumer Sciences in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.