53. Caring For LGBTQ Youth: Practice With Love

The simple act of asking LGBTQ youth, “how do you want to identify yourself? ” is already a big step towards making the world a better place for them. Another point of discussion that should be raised regarding this matter is mental health, specifically on how we can transform the culture of stigmatizing and victimizing these young people to one that simply recognizes them as humans, regardless of their Sexual orientation or gender identity.. The right questions to ask LGBTQ youth, alongside other related topics on their mental health, are what we discussed with Dr. Erin Klein and Dr. Karen Bernstein today.

Dr. Klein is a third-year pediatrics resident at Northwestern University – Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago while Dr. Bernstein is an Adolescent Medicine clinician and educator with special interests in adolescent reproductive health, adolescent weight management (including obesity and eating disorders), and adolescent primary care for underserved youth.

[00:01] Dr. Erin Klein and Dr. Karen Bernstein Share Their Story With Us

  • Erin and Karen talk about where their paths have crossed 
  • Don’t miss our discussion about “coming out” among the LGBTQ youth

[07:32] The Right Questions to Ask

  • How “Queer” has been reclaimed by the youth of today
  • Language is crucial 
  • Ask kids these questions if you want to know more about their sexual orientation
  • We discuss making the youth’s identity “official” in electronic medical records (EMRs)
  • Why confidentiality is a crucial factor for LGBTQ youth

[17:24] Making Mental Health Services Accessible

  • We have an interesting discussion about mental health among LGBTQ youth
  • Are mental health services accessible for the LGBTQ youth?
  • Advocacies don’t always need to be big projects 
  • Here’s what Karen thinks 

[27:28] How to Rally People to Join Our Advocacies

  • Do you want to learn more about mental health among LGBTQ youth?
  • Karen shares some resources you can check out now
  • The initiatives of the American Academy of Pediatrics on LGBTQ issues
  • Writing for publications is another powerful step to rally people and call on legislators

[37:57] What Erin and Karen Will Say To Their Younger Selves

  • Erin tells the young version of her that things will always get better 
  • Don’t miss Karen’s message for her resident self 

 [42:24] Closing Segment

  • Final takeaways:
  • Words do matter
  • Don’t make assumptions when you go into a room. Be open and listen
  • Questions to ask and how to phrase them
  • Many EMRs now capture sexual orientation and gender identity or SOGIE data to allow preferred pronouns and names.
  • The mental health of our teens is critical.
  • The current problem is stigmatizing and victimizing LGBTQ youth 
  • Resources you can access now 
  • Links below
  • Consider hospital committee policies and EMR options.
  • Reaching out to school boards can be powerful.
  • On the state and national level, learn about state legislation and speak up for LGBTQ youth
  • Write op-eds blogs and post on social media
  • If you’re an AAP member, consider joining the section on LGBTQ health and wellness
  • Practice with love

Key Quotes:

“It’s not being LGBT that causes these mental health problems. It’s living in a household or attending school or being in a community or society that doesn’t affirm your identity that’s more of a risk factor.” – Dr. Erin Klein

“I think that Gen Z has taught us a lot on how to approach everyone with love and not put people in binary categories.” –  Dr. Karen Bernstein

Email [email protected] to connect with Erin then [email protected] to reach out to Karen. Check out Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago to know more about Erin’s work and then The University of Illinois College of Medicine to learn more about Karen.

Resources Mentioned:

LOVE WHAT YOU HEARD? Leave us a 5-star review so we can continue to provide you with great content. Share this episode and help people know more about children’s health and well-being.

Share Article:

Dr Lia Gaggino

Dr Lia Gaggino Host of the Pediatric Meltdown Podcast

Dr. Lia Gaggino has worked as a pediatrician for over 30 years on the west side of Michigan. During her career as a primary care physician, she has been privileged to care for children and adolescents, and know that their success is closely tied to mental wellness.

Join the Mailing List

Recent Posts

  • All Post
  • ADHD
  • Advocacy
  • Aggression and Disruptive Behaviors
  • Anxiety
  • Autism
  • Building Better Workflows
  • Depression
  • Genetics
  • healthcare disparities and inequalities
  • LGBTQIA+
  • Medications
  • Mental Health
  • Other
  • Pain
  • Parent/child
  • Physician Well-Being
  • Schizophrenia
  • Sleep
  • Social Media
  • Substance Abuse
  • Suicide Prevention
  • Trauma
Edit Template

About

Dr. Lia Gaggino has worked as a pediatrician for over 30 years on the west side of Michigan. During her career as a primary care physician, she has been privileged to care for children and adolescents, and know that their success is closely tied to mental wellness.

Recent Episodes

  • All Post
  • ADHD
  • Advocacy
  • Aggression and Disruptive Behaviors
  • Anxiety
  • Autism
  • Building Better Workflows
  • Depression
  • Genetics
  • healthcare disparities and inequalities
  • LGBTQIA+
  • Medications
  • Mental Health
  • Other
  • Pain
  • Parent/child
  • Physician Well-Being
  • Schizophrenia
  • Sleep
  • Social Media
  • Substance Abuse
  • Suicide Prevention
  • Trauma

© 2023 Pediatric Meltdown