According to a study conducted by Mujeres Latinas en Accion and Amigas Latinas, it seems as if Latina lesbians in Chicago are enduring a surge in domestic violence.
Out of the 300 women profiled, 49 percent report that their partner attempted to isolate them from family and friends (which is a huge red flag in any relationship, to say the least) 43 percent report that their partner had pushed or hit them, and 31 percent have had a partner threaten their lives.Furthermore, 45 percent admit to have attacked their partner and 25 percent report that they had threatened to kill their partner during a dispute.
As if the discrimination they face (both outside of and within the Hispanic community) was not enough, these women also have the added issue of domestic violence. Small sample size aside, these numbers point to a growing issue. It is already difficult for members of the GLBTQ community, regardless of race, to acquire access to resources that combat domestic violence. This impediment, no doubt, exacerbates domestic violence withing the GLBTQ community overall.
Although the end of the report has a silver lining in that most in the LBTQ are out and have found support, the issue of dating and domestic violence is an ongoing one. Overall, the Medical University of South Carolina reports that 17-45% of lesbians have reported at least one incident of intimate partner violence, and even this number reflects vast underreporting (as do most statistics regarding dating/domestic violence).
As someone who works adamantly on my campus to educate my peers on the dangers of dating violence, the need to raise awareness about and fight it in the heterosexual and homosexual communities is paramount in my eyes. No matter who a woman decides to love, she does not at all deserve to be abused by her partner in any way, shape or form.
Love does not hurt.
The best way to combat abuse is to talk about it. Here is a list of my favorite resources: