Haven, as a center, believes that all oppression is connected and sexual violence is a symptom of oppression. We recognize that sexual violence and support services historically do not include the experiences of LGBTQIA individuals especially QTPOC. It is important to note that a person of any gender expression and/or sexual orientation can experience sexual violence. Sexual violence occurs within and outside of the LGBTQIA community. LGBQIA, trans, and gender non-conforming individuals
are often targeted due to their sexuality and/or perceived gender expression. This violence is used as a tool to maintain heteronormativity. In the context of this particular act, it is a hate crime and important to center in conversations about sexual violence. Haven serves as a confidential resource and staff here can walk you through your options. You have a right to report, seek out confidential resources, pursue medical attention, and/or go through the Equity Grievance Panel
free from homophobia, transphobia, and/or racial harassment.
Quick Facts Intimate partner and sexual violence does not only happen in heterosexual relationships. Violence is about power and control -- not sexual or romantic desires. It is a myth that abuse only happens by the “bigger,” “stronger,” “butch,” or more masculine partner. Women and femmes can be abusive and violent. As anyone can be a victim/survivor, anyone can be a perpetrator.
Examples of emotional and physical abuse can include but are not limited to:
- Threatening to out someone
- Controlling how someone expresses their sexuality and gender
- Using slurs that are racist, homophobic, transphobic, and biphobic
- Using stereotypes to control your partner
- Withholding hormones and medications
- Pressuring someone to “transition” in ways the abuser sees fit
- Refusing to let partner heal from transition
- Fetishization of someone’s racial and/or trans identity
- Hypersexualization of identity (for example, assuming someone always wants sex rather than asking)
- Financial manipulation
In a transphobic, homophobic and racist world, survivors or those who experience sexual violence distrust in support services, including the Equity Grievance Panel, campus safety, police, hospitals, and even peers and professors is a valid response, especially in a small rural community. Some barriers to seeking support can include:
- Fear of violence and retaliation from responders, family, friends and larger community
- Individuals might blame their own identity for the abuse. No one deserves abuse.
- Fear of being outed
- Fear of outing someone
- Fear of “betraying” community that is already targeted
- Lack of acknowledgement that sexual violence can happen to LGBQIA, trans and gender non-conforming individuals
- Individuals experiencing sexual and intimate partner violence might have same support systems as partners, i.e. social spaces, student organizations, friends, etc.
At Haven, we believe you. We understand that healing and justice do not look the same for everyone who experiences sexual and intimate partner violence.
You can learn more about the dynamics of LGBTQIA sexual violence and intimate partner violence below: