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The Advocate
1 February 2005

Health

When 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 key."

 

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."

 

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