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“I’m dating a woman and she’s half my size, and I’m thinking, who’s going to believe me? Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention often doesn’t track the gender identity of its study participants, its 2010 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey did help shed light on the magnitude of domestic violence in LGBTQ relationships.
She thought about seeking help but wondered how she would explain the abuse. There’s a cultural sense of what violence in a straight relationship is like, but there’s no cultural blueprint for dealing with abuse between two women.”A picture of the silent epidemic of domestic violence in the queer community is emerging, thanks to those who share their experiences and to research on intimate partner violence that includes people who identify as LGBTQ.
For those who do seek protection, going to the police can be terrifying.
Some LGBTQ people worry that approaching the police can end in their wrongful arrest.
“Being out isn’t a black-and-white thing,” says Messinger.
“Many queer people are out to some family members and friends, but they may not be out to coworkers or to all of their friends.” An abuser can exploit this vulnerability by forcing a person to hold hands and kiss in public or by directly telling a boss, parents, and friends that they are queer or transgender. The victim can be forced to hide their gender or sexual identity, isolating them from community support and resources.