China-in-Asia-on-MapBeijing: China’s LGBT community faces a tough battle against emotional issues and is four times more likely to become depressed than other groups, according to a joint report by a voluntary organization and a leading mental health research institute.

Out of 1,653 respondents from the LGBT community across China, 58.21% of teenagers and 49.03% of adults are prone to depression, higher than the national level in both categories, says the report published by the Beijing LGBT Center and the Institute of Psychology under the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

This means that gays and lesbians are four times more likely to become depressed than other groups, and the rate is three times higher among adolescent gay bays and girls.

The report published May 16 was collated from reposes got via social media applications such as Sina Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, websites and offline research, Xiao Tie, executive director of the center told

Of those surveyed, 60.61% expressed the wish to change negative emotions regarding their sexual orientation. Other problems include relationships, self-confidence and self-identity, the report said.

It found that gay people are more likely to suffer from mood swings and mental health issues.

In the past year only seven percent of respondents said they had sought psychological help, and more than 56 percent said they had never considered getting psychological assistance.

Gay men and women in China avoided such assistance due to concerns about cost, quality of services, and fear of breach of confidentiality.

Nearly 10% of the LGBT community have considered trying “conversion therapies” to “treat” their sexual orientation. This group of people showed higher levels of depression, according to the report.

John Shen, mental health program officer with the Beijing LGBT Center told that the report emphasizes prejudices against the LGBT community.

He maintains that same-sex relations has not been completely removed from the Chinese Classification of Mental Disorders, which is partly why conservative attitudes still persist in the country.

The government should increase efforts to completely eliminate same-sex relations from the Chinese Classification of Mental Disorders, and that Chinese society should be more inclusive to help the LGBT community become happier.

“What the community needs is understanding, respect and love, because they are all human beings,” Shen said.