• “Outing” a partner’s sexual orientation or gender identity. Abusive partners in LGBTQ relationships may threaten to ‘out’ victims to family members, employers, community members and others.

  • Saying that no one will help the victim because s/he is lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, or that for this reason, the partner “deserves” the abuse.

  • Justifying the abuse with the notion that a partner is not “really” lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (i.e. the victim may once have had/may still have relationships, or express a gender identity, inconsistent with the abuser’s definitions of these terms). This can be used both as a tool in verbal and emotional abuse as well as to further the isolation of a victim from the community.

  • Monopolizing support resources through an abusive partner’s manipulation of friends and family supports and generating sympathy and trust in order to cut off these resources to the victim. This is a particular issue to members of the LGBTQ community where they may be fewer specific resources, neighborhoods or social outlets.

  • Portraying the violence as mutual and even consensual, or as an expression of masculinity or some other “desirable” trait.

Abusive partners in LGBTQ relationships use all the same tactics to gain power and control as abusive partners in heterosexual relationships — physical, sexual or emotional abuse, financial control, isolation and more.

But abusive partners in LGBTQ relationships also reinforce their tactics that maintain power and control with societal factors that compound the complexity a survivor faces in leaving or getting safe in an LGBTQ relationship.

LGBT Violence

© Adapted from the 2011 Duluth Model Power and Control Wheels by Domestic Abuse Intervention Programs

Other Resources

The National Coalition of Anti Violence Programs
AVP provides free and confidential assistance to thousands of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and HIV-affected (LGBTQH) people each year from all five boroughs of New York City through direct client services and community organizing and public advocacy.

GLBTQ Domestic Violence Project
The Gay Men’s Domestic Violence Project is a grassroots, non-profit organization founded by a gay male survivor of domestic violence and developed through the strength, contributions and participation of the community.

GLBT National Help Center
The GLBT National Help Center runs the GLBT National Hotline (1-888-843-4564) and the GLBT National Youth Talkline for youth up to age 25 (1-800-246-7743).

Northwest Network of Bi, Trans, Lesbian, and Gay Survivors of Abuse
Northwest Network works to end violence and abuse by building loving and equitable relationships in communities and across the country.

CUAV (Community United Against Violence)
CUAV works to build the power of LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer)communities to transform violence and oppression.

The Network la Red
The Network/La Red is a survivor-led, social justice organization that works to end partner abuse in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, BDSM, polyamorous and queer communities.

The Trans Lifeline
The Trans Lifeline is dedicated to the wellbeing of transgender people. In the US call 877-565-8860. In Canada call 877-330-6366.

Trevor Project

The Trevor Project is the national crisis lifeline for LGBTQ teens and adults. They have suicide prevention services for youth in digital spaces, counseling via IM, and a large online social network for LGBTQ people.

For free confidential counseling, call us today at (208) 733-0100

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