If you’ve never heard of it, PostSecret.com is a website that is updated every Sunday with images of handmade postcards… with yep, you guessed it- people’s SECRETS. I used to love going to the site every week, indulging myself by reading the secrets that random strangers mailed in. It describes itself as a “community art project” and it can be pretty interesting at times, IMHO. Every once in a while, I still find myself reading PostSecret, and recently, one particular secret really stuck out to me.
The thing that stuck out to me is that I know that whoever wrote this secret isn’t alone. The misconception that folks in same sex relationships can’t (or don’t) experience abuse is not only false, but dangerous. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGTBQQ) teens experience dating abuse at the same rates (and in similar ways) as teens in straight relationships. In fact, some studies even show that LGBTQQ teens experience dating abuse at higher rates than those in straight relationships.
For anyone in an abusive relationship, it can be really scary to leave or seek help. There are a ton of valid reasons that make it difficult for people to leave abusive relationships, such as fear, threats, love, and no support. But for individuals in LGBTQQ relationships, the fear that no one will believe them because of their sexuality can make leaving an abusive relationship even more difficult. We sometimes hear myths like “a male can’t abuse a male” or “a female can’t abuse a female,” and it is these very misconceptions that create an even more dangerous environment for people in abusive LGBTQQ relationships.
Join TAP in raising awareness about dating violence and promoting healthy relationships for ALL. Help TAP debunk myths like this one to help create a safer world for everyone. Everyone deserves safe, loving, and respectful relationships. For more information about abuse in same-sex dating relationships, click here!