So in RA training we go over some pretty heavy subjects and one of them is eating disorders. We had an hour long presentation of what they are, what populations have a heightened risk, and ways to help them on campus. One thing that was totally left out was the LGBT community and so I asked if they had any heightened risk, since based on my experiences in life I felt that particularly the gay male community may. The presenter had no idea however, so we traded contact info after the session.
She just got back to me and there’s a lot of psychological research done on this subject, surprisingly, but it isn’t ever incorporated into eating disorder presentations. Lesbians and straight males have the lowest risk of developing an eating disorder in our society, whereas gay males and straight women have the highest risk. What’s interesting is that both groups in each category have almost the exact same risk, totally mirroring each other.
I just want to get the word out there and let you all know that contrary to its exclusion from presentations, eating disorders are a serious problem in the gay community and please do not ever be afraid to seek help / ask questions if you or a friend may be struggling with one. Just because you are a male does not mean it’s uncommon to suffer from one.