LGBT Addiction Treatment Santa Clarita
Addiction In The LGBTQ Community
Addiction has been a disease affecting millions of Americans for years, and the LGBTQ community has not been immune to the devastating effects of addiction. In fact, the LGBTQ population has an increased chance of developing an addiction compared to other people within society. Nearly 20% to 30% of LGBTQ individuals will develop an alcohol or drug addiction within their lives. This staggering difference is due to the lack of LGBT addiction treatment in Santa Clarita when LGBTQ individuals seek help.
When faced with feelings of exclusion, rejection, or social isolation, it is common for individuals to search for a way to escape these troubling emotions. The allure of an escape through alcohol or drugs is appealing to many as it provides a brief moment of relief or feeling of euphoric escape that can take away the pains stemming from the judgment that has been placed on you. The unfortunate and dangerous side to this method is that addiction can easily and quickly develop in vulnerable people looking for a way to ease their pain.
Throughout modern-day society, there are minimal places that are LGBTQ-friendly. When you are faced with adversity each day, you want to spend your time in a place where you feel safe and included. One of the only establishments that have developed an LGBTQ safe place is LGBTQ/gay bars. Patrons attending these bars will benefit from feeling included, but it also creates another barrier with adding pressure to engage in alcohol or drug consumption.
Choosing to enter into addiction treatment is already a vulnerable time for any individual approaching a significant life change. When you are someone within the LGBTQ population, deciding where you will attend addiction treatment often comes with different reservations or concerns than the heterosexual population has to consider. When you identify as part of the LGBTQ community, you want to choose LGBT addiction treatment that provides a welcoming, safe space to heal from addiction without fears of judgment, biases, or discrimination.
Issues Faced in the LGBT Community
There are many challenges and obstacles that the LGBTQ community will encounter within their day-to-day lives within society. While some levels of discrimination are more widely known or mentioned within mainstream media, it is fair to say that unless you have lived through it, it is hard to fully grasp the extent of discrimination and judgment placed upon someone in the LGBTQ community. The following are some of the issues that individuals within the LGBTQ community face within their day to day life:
- Discrimination such as hate crimes, judgment from others, social exclusion
- Experiencing public humiliation from peers or strangers due to your sexual orientation or gender identity
- Being made to use a gender-specific room or have the wrong gender placed upon you that goes against your gender identity
- Family or friends placing judgment on you or disengaging from the relationship after coming out to them
- Inability to obtain a job or a promotion due to sexual orientation or gender identity
- Social exclusion or rejection from activities or events
- Violent acts are placed upon you by strangers or individuals you know only because you identify as LGBTQ.
- Religious backgrounds or spiritual groups put limits or restrictions on your ability to participate in or practice within those groups
- Public scrutiny or judgment within social establishments
Mental Health and Addiction Among LGBT Population
When you have lived your life in fear of how others will treat you or the negative judgments placed on you, it often increases the chance for individuals to develop an ongoing mental health concern. For those living with an addiction and mental health concern, it is commonly known as a co-occurring disorder. Often, when individuals are experiencing adverse side effects or symptoms from their mental health disorder, it is common for those individuals to look for a way to minimize those side effects with the use of alcohol or drugs. While the use of substances can momentarily make the symptoms subside at first, the more you use substances, the larger the quantity of substance you have to take to reach the desired effects.
As your addiction progresses, the coinciding symptoms of your mental health disorder are often exacerbated, causing a vicious cycle of substance abuse and untreated mental health. Through a dual diagnosis treatment program, patients will be able to treat their presenting substance abuse disorder and mental health disorder simultaneously. Patients will learn healthy alternatives for coping and managing their mental health disorder, using holistic healing measures and practical tools for emotional regulation during LGBT addiction treatment in Santa Clarita.
While mental health is a growing concern for many Americans, the LGBTQ population experiences higher levels of mental health than other societal populations. This could be in part because of the social stigmas placed on individuals and having to live your life hiding who you truly are. Some of the most common mental health concerns that individuals within the LGBTQ community are:
- Severe or major depression
- Anxiety disorder
- Elevated stress levels
- PTSD for those who may have been victims of violent acts placed upon them due to their sexual orientation or gender identity
- Engaging in self-harming behaviors
- Increase in suicidal tendencies
Common Substances Abused by LGBT Persons
There are many substances that individuals may use that are all highly addictive. In the LGBTQ community, there tend to be four popular substances commonly abused within their community:
- Alcohol: This widely popular substance is commonly used within most events, modern traditions and portrayed in media as a way to connect with others or relax after a long, hard day. Alcohol use is a rising concern for Americans, and it is frequently used within the LGBTQ community, with 20% to 25% of the LGBTQ population developing a moderate to severe alcohol dependency.
- Marijuana: The popularity of marijuana has been prevalent for years and, in some states, has become legal. Even though this drug is legal, it still can negatively impact someone’s mental health and daily functioning. Marijuana use is increasingly more of a concern for gay men than heterosexual men, with nearly 3.5 times more gay men using marijuana than heterosexual men.
- Amphetamines: This illicit street drug has become increasingly popular among the drug scene and can be a deadly substance that causes havoc within the user. It is a highly addictive substance that easily hooks users and leaves them within a cycle of addiction before they know it. Individuals within the LGBTQ are 12.2 times more likely to use amphetamines than the heterosexual population.
- Heroin: It is no secret that the United States has faced an epidemic with the heroin crisis. Many Americans have been succumbing to this disease, and the LGBTQ community is at a greater risk of succumbing to this substance as individuals within the LGBTQ population are 9.5 times more likely to use heroin than any other demographic.
LGBT Friendly Addiction Treatment Options
The key to a successful and effective LGBT addiction treatment program is providing an environment that fosters safety and inclusion. Healing from addiction requires patients to be open and willing to become vulnerable to looking inward to uncover the root of their addiction. To facilitate a welcoming and secure environment, patients must be within an addiction treatment program that fully understands the barriers that the LGBTQ population faces and helps to create an environment that builds trust and openness within its patients. This process can be done through honesty and validation. Each individual who has experienced addiction treatment is honest and that the emotions they experience are authentic and valid. Through individual and group therapy sessions, patients will have a safe place to openly speak about their experiences with coming out, the discrimination they face, and finding themselves. During this time, patients can often connect with peers within group therapy who have gone through similar experiences or emotions. When you are coming from a place of being alone with these emotions or dealing with judgments or cruelty from others, there is a great deal of comfort in building connections with others that can become long-lasting support even after completing addiction treatment.
LGBT Addiction Treatment at Muse
Muse Treatment provides LGBT addiction treatment in Santa Clarita that utilizes evidence-based therapy methods to assist patients in healing from addiction and restarting their life on a path of recovery. Our caring staff understands the need for an LGBT addiction treatment center that focuses on celebrating the differences within our patients and helping patients heal from the prejudice that has been placed upon them. When you decide to recover from addiction with Muse Treatment, you choose to gain a network of support and foundation of care with the patients and staff within our addiction treatment center. Contact Muse Treatment at (800) 426-1818 today to answer any questions and learn more about our LGBT addiction treatment in Santa Clarita.