[ON THE REAL]Intimate Partner Violence within the LGBTQI+

On The Real feature with Sibusisiwe Maphumulo, Andile Jiyane and Denmark Vee discussed issues of intimate partner violence within the LGBTIQ+ community and the obstacles people face when reporting about the abuse.

“We have seen a lot activism around heterosexual violence and a little when it comes to same sex relationships, it is not because it does not happen but because it is violence within people of the same sex it is mostly shunned upon,” Mphumulo said.

Statistics on heterosexual violence are easily accessible because there has been a lot of studies done on it, while violence within the LGBTIQ+ community statistics still remain scarce. It is a general assumption that IPV does not exist in the LGBTQI+ community yet the rate of violence is as high as in the heterosexual relationships but because of the stigma around homosexuality and societal indifferences means that the victims are invisible.

Jiyane said recently on Facebook, newspaper the Daily Sun posted a link to one of their advice columns about a 21-year old gay man in an abusive relationship.

The link had a short description as follows: I am a 21 year old gay man who is dating a 42- year old man, he is a divorcee and when he is drunk he beats and insults me. I am afraid to open a case against him because I was once told that I should sort out my issues like a man, my family has rejected me for being gay and I don’t have anyone else to turn to. The comments that followed after were all ridiculing the guy and telling him to stand up to his abuser.

According to Jiyane, one of the comments actually said: Two bulls don’t live in the same kraal, meaning two men (heads of house) can’t live together. The common theme amongst the comments was men who were commenting and telling the guy to stand up for himself, they went even as far to say that being gay is unnatural and culture and religion does not recognise it.

Maphumulo said it is sickening to realise that we are living in a supposed rainbow nation that accepts people of all colours and genders but we still have people who are still believe that being gay is a sin. It is not just society but also family members that shun gay people and make them outcasts.

Jiyane said, “There has been a lot of challenges when it comes to dealing with IPV in the LGBTQI community because violence goes unreported due to homophobia, the stigma that comes with being gay and simply lack of recognition/acknowledgement of the abuse.”

She also said as much as it has to do with fear, something needs to be done to change these norms. From police refusing to help because it is a ‘private matter’, to society believing that IPV does not exist within the same sex community.

Just like any relationship where there are two partners, it is the same with same sex relationships. Figuratively speaking one has to take a leading role and the other has to follow commands. The shame of being beaten by your partner is not easy especially when people have are being abused by someone they trust.

‘’Rome wasn’t built in a day but if communities came together to educate each other about such things, life would be at least bearable.’’

Listen to the Clip below for more information:


Listen to On The Real on the AM2PM with Denmark Vee, Andile and Sibusisiwe every Wednesdays from 12 midday.

By Mndaba Lindelani

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