The Supreme Court of the United States declared same-sex marriage to be legal in all 50 states in June 2015, and many members of the LGBTQ+ community were granted rights and privileges that were previously only afforded to heterosexual couples. More than 1100 statutory provisions to same-sex couples were granted by the legalization, and President Barack Obama said that the ruling will “strengthen all of our communities by offering equal state and dignity to all same-sex couples and their families”. He also called it a “victory for America”.
Not only did the low benefit of same-sex couples who want to get married, though, but it also had a dramatic effect on LGBTQ+ youth.
As it turns out, the suicide attempt rate among LGBTQ+ youth declined significantly only two years after the legislation of gay marriage, according to the Associated Press.
Reports say that suicide is the second-largest leading cause of death in the U.S. for minors and young adults, and LGBTQ+ teens are five times more likely to reach for their life than their straight peers.
A study was conducted in the 32 states where gay marriage was legalized through the 2015 Supreme Court decisions, and more than 26,000 LGBTQ+ youth participants were involved. As it turns out, the suicide attempt rates dropped 7 percent among all students, and 14 percent among gay youngsters after same-sex marriage was legalized in each state.
The study showed that there was no change in states where same-sex marriage wasn’t legalized by the 2015 decision.
Researchers say that the law made LGBTQ+ kids feel “more hopeful for the future” and they also believe that the measures increased tolerance among their straight peers, while reducing the stigmatization felt by gay kids.
A similar study was conducted in Denmark and Sweden, and it was published in 2019. The study found similar results among married gay couples, and same-sex unions saw a 46 percent decline in suicide attempts since same-sex marriage was legalized.