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Abusive partners in LGBTQIA relationships use the same tactics as in heterosexual relationships. They use physical, sexual, emotional, or financial abuse to control and isolate their victims. Abusers in LGBTQIA relationships often use societal factors to reinforce the abuse. These factors make it even more difficult for an LGBTQIA survivor to stay safe.
The following are examples of power and control tactics:
  • “Outing” a partner’s sexual orientation or gender identity. Abusive partners may threaten to ‘out’ victims to family, friends, employers, or others.
  • Saying that no one will help the victim because he or she is lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender.
  • Saying that the partner “deserves” the abuse, because of his or her gender identity.
  • Justifying the abuse by saying a partner is not “really” lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. Abusers use this as a tool in emotional abuse and to isolate a victim from the community.
  • Manipulating friends or family to steal their support. This is a big issue for members of the LGBTQIA community who have fewer support resources to start with.
  • Portraying the violence as mutual and consensual.
  • Talking about the violence as a “desirable” trait such as masculinity.