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Research Trends

It Gets Better Videos for Suicide Prevention in LGBTIQ+ Adolescents

Content Analysis of German-Language Videos

Published Online:https://doi.org/10.1027/0227-5910/a000691

Abstract.Background: The It Gets Better project aims to help prevent suicide among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer (LGBTIQ+) adolescents. It features personal video narratives portraying how life gets better when struggling with adversities. Research on the contents of messages is scarce. Aims: We aimed to explore the content of videos in the Austrian It Gets Better project regarding the representation of various LGBTIQ+ groups and selected content characteristics. Method: A content analysis of all German-language videos was conducted (N = 192). Messages related to coming out, stressors experienced, suicidal ideation/behavior, and on how things get better were coded. Results: Representation was strong for gay men (n = 45; 41.7%). Coming out to others was mainly positively framed (n = 31; 46.3%) and seen as a tool to make things better (n = 27; 37.5%). Social support (n = 42; 62.7%) and self-acceptance (n = 37; 55.2%) were prevalent topics. Common stressors included a conservative setting (n = 18, 26.9%), and fear of outing (n = 17; 25.4%). Suicidality (n = 9; 4.7%) and options to get professional help (n = 7; 8.2%) were rarely addressed. Limitations: Only aspects explicitly brought up in the videos were codeable. Conclusion: Videos do not fully represent gender identities and sexual orientations. Messaging on suicidality and professional help require strengthening to tailor them better for suicide prevention.

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