A Difficult Conversation

Worth Living Ambassador McKenna Witkowski

An LGBTQ+ Ambassador living with GAD, MDD, and ADHD Type 2. Also an EMT and proud Social Work Major at Daemen College in Buffalo, New York.

A Difficult Conversation

There are many issues in our community that are never talked about which lead to high rates of suicide and substance abuse. I want to tackle one of those issues with this blog- LGBTQ+ dating abuse.

LGBTQ+ people are at a higher risk to be in an abusive relationship. According to the Human Rights Campaign, 42.8% of LGBQ+ people will be in an abusive relationship. Also from the HRC, 88.9% of trans* people will experience some form of dating violence. LGBTQ+ abusers use the current political atmosphere to their advantage.

Here are some signs and symptoms of LGBTQ+-specific tactics:

-Outing the victim in an unsafe environment, such as to disapproving family or a religious leader
-Leading the victim to believe there is no help available because the victim is LGBTQ+
-Leading the victim to believe that they aren’t LGBTQ+, a form of emotional abuse

Of course, LGBTQ+ dating abuse can present with the same signs and symptoms as heterosexual abuse. Some of these are, but are not limited to:

Physical Abuse

Any form of physical harm against you, a family member, or a pet- including, but not limited to hitting, punching, kicking, and biting.
-Threatening you with a weapon such as a gun or a knife

Emotional Abuse

-Threatening you, a family member, or a pet
-Treating you like property, not a partner
-Unpredictability and a short temper
-Controlling how you dress
-Preventing you from seeing friends or family
-Name calling and belittling
-Controlling your finances
-Blaming their abuse on an outside factor, like alcohol or drug use
-Gaslighting (trivializing or denying the abuse, making you doubt yourself)
Sexual Abuse
-Tampering with your birth control methods
-Forcing you to have sex
-Unwanted touching
-Trying to coerce you to have sex, after you have refused

Remember, abuse is not limited to the aforementioned signs.

If you suspect that you are in an abusive relationship, there is help available.
The Trevor Project (LGBTQ+ specific)-1-866-488–7386
National Domestic Violence Hotline-1-800-799-7233
LGBTQ+ National Help Center- 1-800-246-PRIDE
The Anti-Violence Project- 242-714-1124

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