People in the LGBTQIA+ community experience domestic violence at the same or even higher rates than their straight counterparts according to the CDC. Within the LGBTQ community, transgender people and bisexual women face the most alarming rates of sexual violence. Among both populations, sexual violence begins early, often during childhood. 

According to a survey conducted by The CDC’s National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey 

  • 44 percent of lesbians and 61 percent of bisexual women experience rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner, compared to 35 percent of straight women 

  • 26 percent of gay men and 37 percent of bisexual men experience rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner, compared to 29 percent of straight men 

  • 46 percent of bisexual women have been raped, compared to 17 percent of straight women and 13 percent of lesbians 

  • 22 percent of bisexual women have been raped by an intimate partner, compared to 9 percent of straight women 

  • 40 percent of gay men and 47 percent of bisexual men have experienced sexual violence other than rape, compared to 21 percent of straight men 

  • In a study of male same sex relationships, only 26% of men called the police for assistance after experiencing near-lethal violence. 

  • Transgender victims are more likely to experience intimate partner violence in public, compared to those who do not identify as transgender. 

  • Bisexual victims are more likely to experience sexual violence, compared to people who do not identify as bisexual. 

  • LGBTQ Black/African American victims are more likely to experience physical intimate partner violence, compared to those who do not identify as Black/African American. 

  • LGBTQ white victims are more likely to experience sexual violence, compared to those who do not identify as white. 

  • LGBTQ victims on public assistance are more likely to experience intimate partner violence compared to those who are not on public assistance. 

 

In a study of male same sex relationships, only 26% of men called the police for assistance after experiencing near-lethal violence. 

Trans people, particularly trans women of color, experience harassment, assault, discrimination, and homicide at profoundly higher rates than the general population 

 

Abusers may use some of the same tactics used in heterosexual relationships, they may also take advantage of homophobia and transphobia to abuse their partners. Some examples of this include:  

  • Threatening to out their partner against their will 

  • Using hurtful slurs associated with being gay, bi or gender expansive 

  • Physically abusing body parts associated with gender, such as hair, breasts and genitals 

  • Damaging property associated with gender, such as binders, wigs, makeup or clothes 

  • Forcing a survivor to engage in sexual acts to prove the survivor is a “true” LGBTQ person 

  • Threatening to end a survivor’s relationship with his or her children due to sexual orientation, gender identity, or non-biological relationship to the children 

 

Sources 

  • National Coalition Against Domestic Violence 

  • National Center for Transgender Equality, 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey 

  • CDC, The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS): 2010 Findings on Victimization by Sexual Orientation.