Why do LBTs stay in abusive relationships.....
Last week i posted an article titled why "Women stay in Abusive Relationships".Today am from a meeting with the members of WomenWorkingWithWomen which is a Lesbian,Bisexual,Trans gender group within Kisumu Town and Draws members from Kisumu Rural and Kisumu Urban plus Kericho and this topic came up and i was interested to know why they stay in abusive relationships.
First they identified three types of abuses some of them went through,then the members also identified the reasons why these abuses took place,and lastly how to avoid them.
Emotional Abuse,Physical Abuse and Sexual abuse are the major types of abuses in an LBTI relationship in my community.
Emotional Abuse ranges from:-
1.One partner being made to feel inferior in the relationship while the other assumes Superiority and commands all authority.
2.One partner having a feeling that she is being used emotionally by the other partner.
3.Hurling extreme verbal and nasty abuses that look down upon or despises the other partners emotions and person as a whole.
4.When one partner decides to give the silent treatment to the other partner after a dispute and maybe withdraws all privileges that she had bestowed upon her partner especially financially,making her go through emotional and mental torture.
Sexual Abuse isnt so rampant within the LBTI community but it involves sexual harassment from one's partner which ranges from forceful touching of one's genitalia and even rape!
Physical abuse also came up as a form of abuse where a partner beats her other partner whenever they differ.Or decides to insert crude objects into her other partners genitalia with an intent to cause grievous harm following an argument or breakup.
The above abuses are caused by different reasons or issues amongst partners.Drugs especially alcohol abuse came out as one of the major causes of the above mentioned types of abuses.
Emotional stress and frustrations also came out as another point where an emotionally unstable partner subjected the other partner to the abuses.
Infidelity is another reason for these abuses to occur.An unfaithful partner puts her partner through emotional stress and if it comes to worse they end up engaging in physical fights.
Infringing on one another privacy especially going through someone's text messages on the phone also brings about an emotional and even physical abuse in a relationship.
Lack of trust also featured.Where the two partners don't trust one another leading to suspicion and emotional abuse.
Lack of proper communication between two couples also leads to most partners fighting.
The most interesting part of the topic was when now everyone was giving out a reason as to why they thought they stayed or their friends stayed in the abusive relationships even though it hurt them physically and destroyed them emotionally.
Some said they stayed in these unions because of love!!! That you could be so much in love with your partner that no matter what type of abuse she put you through you would stay right on and that with time your partner will change!!!! MY OWN OPINION-THIS IS NONSENSE.If love was a binding factor for both partners then one shouldn't put the other through these abuses.And it is so sad that African culture makes us believe that if your partner beats you when you have offended her then it means that she cares and loves you-is physical abuse an expression of love??.I find this school of thought redundant.
Some are also afraid to let go and start new relationships citing that its a process to get somebody new,getting to know them fully and learning them anew.Hence they stay in an abusive relationship.
Some also felt that they had invested so much in the relationship that they couldn't leave.So they decide to stay on and go through the abuses.
Low self esteem is another reason why some women stayed in these affairs.To them that partner was the best they could ever find and will ever find.And they fear to let go because they are afraid of what others will say or that they will be seen as failures.MY OPINION-LIVE YOUR LIFE AND DON'T LISTEN TO WHAT PEOPLE SAY.YOU KNOW WHAT IS BEST FOR YOU NOT A STRANGER OR A FRIEND.HUMAN BEINGS WILL ALWAYS TALK WHETHER YOU SUCCEED IN YOUR RELATIONSHIP OR NOT.
Financial help or lack of employment also forced some of the ladies to allow themselves be abused.If the other partner is "louder" financially and takes care of all the bills in the house,she automatically calls the shots and so can abuse the other partner like she pleases!!!MY OPINION-GOD CREATED EACH OF US WITH A UNIQUE TALENT,DISCOVER YOURS AND USE IT FOR YOUR BETTERMENT.YOUR LIFE AND WELL BEING IS GREATER THAN ALL THE GOLD AND SILVER PUT TOGETHER,AFTER ALL WE LIVE ONCE,MONEY COMES AND GOES AND THEN COMES AGAIN BLAH BLAH BLAH!
Sexual Satisfaction is also another reason.A lady falls in love with a lady who treats her body and takes her to greater heights during lovemaking,to the extent that even when the vicious cycle of abuse starts she can't leave!-MY OPINION-NOW THAT YOU HAVE BEEN IN THAT RELATIONSHIP AND PROBABLY DISCOVERED WHAT MAKES YOU TICK,WHY NOT LEAVE AND GET SOMEBODY WHO RESPECTS YOU AND TEACH HER HOW YOU WANT TO BE MADE LOVE TO?WHAT IS SO DIFFICULT IN DOING THAT? YOU MIGHT EVEN DISCOVER NEW SENSATIONS FROM YOUR NEW PARTNER THAT YOU WERE MISSING OUT ALOT.
Other minor reasons were like fame,spirit of conquering where one stays on to show that she is a conquerer and keeps her partner by subduing her to think that she is the best she can ever have.
Interestingly these same affected group of ladies also gave me recommendations on how to avoid being emotionally,sexually and physical abused in your relationship
1.Keep boundaries on where to step when it comes to right to privacy.Keep off your partner's phone inboxes,mail or facebook inbox.
2.Be faithful to your partner.It saves the both of you strains in the relationship.
3.The lines and channels of communication should be kept open in a relationship as proper and effective commnunication helps reduce the chances of an abuse occuring.
4.If a problem is too complex for the two of you to solve look for a go between who is neutral and can help solve the problem or help shed more light on how to handle and issue without any of you being hurt either emotionally or physically.
5.Both partners should collectively contribute to the financial needs of the other and the house in general.It is advisable if both partners get jobs and both are financially independent.
6. Heated issues should be postponed until both the partners have cooled off and are in a sober mind to discuss issues amicably.
From the above discussion it is evident to see that women whether in heterosexual or homosexual relationships are prone to being abused either physically,emotionally or sexually.Hence right are being infringed upon.The big worry is that we ourselves instigate some of these abuses and even though we have the power to stop them we sit down and do absolutely nothing about them! We create a comfort zone where this cycle breeds and manifests itself in different forms all in the name of LOVE? Even the Bible sights love as a base of all good things not hurt,abuse,torture and even to the extreme death.
My dear sisters this is a wake-up call we have the POWER,THE WILL AND THE VOICE TO SHOUT OUT TO OUR SISTERS IN SUCH RELATIONSHIPS TO WAKE UP AND MAKE A STEP.REMEMBER WE ARE OUR SISTER'S OWN KEEPERS.