As an LGBTQ+ person in rural Ireland, it can often feel like you are the only one. According to a recent survey, only 15% of LGBTQ+ people in Ireland live in rural areas. This can lead to feelings of isolation and a lack of community support. However, there are resources and organizations available to help those in the LGBTQ+ community living outside of cities.
While it may seem like there are no resources for LGBTQ+ individuals living in rural areas, there are actually several organizations dedicated to providing support and resources. One such organization is the Regional Youth Service which offers confidential support services to LGBTQ+ youth. The organization also hosts workshops and provides information on LGBTQ+ rights and resources.
Another organization that provides support is the Rural Gay Network, which connects individuals in rural areas with a network of LGBTQ+ individuals. The network offers a space for discussion and support and also provides resources on LGBTQ+ issues.
Lastly, BELONG To, an Irish organization dedicated to supporting young LGBTQ+ individuals, offers online support services through the use of video chat, text support, and online counseling.
Mental Health Struggles
The lack of community support available to LGBTQ+ individuals living in rural areas can lead to mental health struggles. According to a study conducted in the UK, LGBTQ+ individuals living in rural areas are more likely to experience anxiety and depression than those living in cities.
This lack of support can lead to feelings of loneliness, isolation, and a sense of not belonging. It is important for individuals in the LGBTQ+ community to seek out support from organizations and networks to help alleviate these struggles.
It is also important to educate those around us about the struggles that we face. According to statistics, 69% of LGBTQ+ individuals in Ireland have experienced discrimination based on their sexuality or gender identity. By sharing our experiences with those around us, we can help increase understanding and support for the LGBTQ+ community.
Navigating healthcare as an LGBTQ+ individual can be difficult, especially in rural areas where healthcare providers may not be trained in LGBTQ+ healthcare. According to a survey conducted in the UK, 1 in 7 LGBTQ+ individuals have avoided seeking healthcare due to fear of discrimination or lack of knowledge from healthcare providers.
It is important for healthcare providers to receive training on LGBTQ+ healthcare to ensure that all individuals receive the proper care they need. The HSE in Ireland provides an LGBTQ+ healthcare directory on their website, which lists healthcare providers and organizations that have received LGBTQ+ cultural competence training.
Additionally, individuals in the LGBTQ+ community can seek out healthcare providers who specialize in LGBTQ+ healthcare, regardless of their location. The Gay and Lesbian Medical Association offers a directory of LGBTQ+ healthcare providers across the world.
Living in rural Ireland as an LGBTQ+ individual can be challenging, but there are resources and organizations available to provide support and resources. It is important for individuals in the community to seek out these resources and educate those around them about the struggles they face. By doing so, we can increase understanding and support for the LGBTQ+ community in rural areas.
Remember, you are not alone. There are people and organizations available to help you navigate the challenges you may face as an LGBTQ+ individual in rural Ireland.