Journal of Child & Adolescent Trauma

, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 81–97 | Cite as

Cyberbullying and LGBTQ Youth: A Systematic Literature Review and Recommendations for Prevention and Intervention

  • Roberto L. Abreu
  • Maureen C. Kenny


Research has demonstrated that cyberbullying has adverse physical and mental health consequences for youths. Unfortunately, most studies have focused on heterosexual and cisgender individuals. The scant available research on sexual minority and gender expansive youth (i.e., LGBTQ) shows that this group is at a higher risk for cyberbullying when compared to their heterosexual counterparts. However, to date no literature review has comprehensively explored the effects of cyberbullying on LGBTQ youth. A systematic review resulted in 27 empirical studies that explore the effects of cyberbullying on LGBTQ youth. Findings revealed that the percentage of cyberbullying among LGBTQ youth ranges between 10.5% and 71.3% across studies. Common negative effects of cyberbullying of LGBTQ youth include psychological and emotional (suicidal ideation and attempt, depression, lower self-esteem), behavioral (physical aggression, body image, isolation), and academic performance (lower GPAs). Recommendations and interventions for students, schools, and parents are discussed.


cyberbullying LGBT youth prevalence correlates effects prevention 



The authors would like to thank Lorena Perez, Marina Marchena, and Haiying Long for their assistance in manuscript preparation.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.


References marked with an asterisk (*) indicate studies included in the meta-analysis.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Educational, School, and Counseling Psychology, College of EducationUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA
  2. 2.Leadership and Professional Studies, College of Arts, Science and EducationFlorida International UniversityMiamiUSA

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