1 February 2005
they were teenagers, Olympic diver Greg Louganis and actor Chad Allen
each lived with severe bouts of panic, anxiety, sadness, and fear. Now
the high-profile pair have teamed up to talk about depression in a
first-of-its-kind nationwide awareness campaign directed toward gay
youth. "Suicide rates among young gay individuals are really high,"
Louganis said, noting that his suicide attempts, were driven by a fear
of not fitting in. "Understanding depression and recognizing it is the
Sponsored by pharmaceutical giant
GlaxoSmith-Kline--maker of several antidepressant medications--the Gay
and Lesbian Medical Association, and the Association of Gay and Lesbian
Psychiatrists, the "Talk About It: Coming Out About Depression" campaign
has included standing-room-only public forums in New York City and San
Francisco and will include events in Los Angeles, Chicago, and Miami.
"We're realizing there's a lot we don't know [about depression among
gays]," said Allen, who had a plan to commit suicide at a young age. "In
simply having the opportunity to talk about it, we're learning a lot."