The idea that a woman can be the one who’s abusive throws a wrench in the traditional view. The idea that only men can be batterers makes it a lot harder for men to get access to shelter” ~ Anon
We are slowly but surely learning not to discriminate along ethnic, sexual and religious lines, which is an awesome and continual moral victory for South Africa. Homo sexual rights are acknowledged and they are afforded the same privileges as hetero sexual citizens, which is a fantastic victory for equality. Unfortunately we continue to harbour a great prejudice when it comes to same-sex partnerships. What I hear you say? Never! Who is still that ignorant?!
To answer these individuals who are so desperately shocked to learn of discrimination still being rife, is quite easy. Close your eyes. Imagine if you will spousal abuse, are you seeing the punches rain down on the victim? Are you seeing the individual crying while inspecting the bruises and the black, blue and swollen eyes? Now tell me please can you imagine, for a moment that the female who’s being beaten is actually a man? Or better still can you fathom that the abuser is a women? If you can’t imagine it, don’t be too hard on yourself, few people can!
Whether it’s Jane or John dispensing the bullying, emotional battering or physical violence, it remains abuse within a relationship – be it marriage or common law partnerships. Domestic violence also occurs in same-sex relationships. Gay and lesbian relationships have been identified as risk factors for abuse in certain populations. Historically, domestic violence has been seen as a family issue and little interest has been directed at violence in same-sex relationships. Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior that transgresses the right of citizens to be free from violence. When one partner in a relationship harms the other to obtain or maintain power and control over them, regardless of whether they are married or unmarried, living together or apart, that is domestic violence.
At Lifeline SA, we understand this issue, identify with the struggle and pledge day to change attitudes and lives. Our purpose requires an innovative, passionate, diverse group of people with integrity, commitment and a desire to bring about social change.
Join the fight and be proud to assist in the eradication of another discriminatory injustice.