DocQ: How to talk to your GP about domestic violence


LGBTQ+ Domestic Violence Awareness Day

May 28th is LGBTQ+ Domestic Violence Awareness Day, a day to bring attention to the issue of domestic violence in queer relationships. DocQ is back to chat to us about healthy relationships and how to chat to your GP when you’re feeling unsafe.

As a GP, it’s important for me to remind my patients that domestic violence can happen to anyone, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

In fact, LGBTQ+ individuals may face unique challenges when recognising and addressing domestic violence.

Recognising the signs of domestic violence

Domestic violence can take many forms, from physical and emotional to sexual abuse.

And for queer folks, it can also involve financial manipulation, being cut off from friends and family, and even threats of being outed.

So it’s super important to recognise the signs, like being controlled, feeling trapped or put down, and being yelled at.

If you’re unsure whether your relationship is healthy, your GP might be a good person to ask.

The importance of finding an LGBTQ+ affirming GP

Having a GP you can trust and be honest with is vital for queer folks.

Sadly, not all healthcare providers are LGBTQ+ friendly, making it tricky to get the needed help.

But if you can find a GP who knows their stuff about LGBTQ+ health issues and understands the specific challenges faced by queer people, it can make a huge difference in tackling domestic violence.

Don’t know where to look? Ask your mates or check out local LGBTQ+ groups for suggestions.

Talking to your GP about domestic violence

Talking to your GP about this can be a difficult and emotional experience, but it’s an essential step towards addressing the issue.

You can start the conversation by saying, “I’ve been feeling unsafe lately, and I need some help”, or “I’m concerned about my relationship, and I’d like to talk to someone about it.”

Your GP can provide support, resources, and referrals to other healthcare providers or community organisations that can help.

What happens next?

When you bring up domestic violence with your GP, they’ll be there to listen and offer you support and resources.

For example, they might ask you questions about what’s happening, like how often it occurs and how severe it is.

Your GP will work with you to create a safety plan to ensure you and anyone else involved is safe, and they’ll be there to support you as you navigate the situation.

They’ll also be able to point you toward helpful resources and support services, such as LGBTQ+ organisations or domestic violence hotlines.

What you can do on May 28th

May 28th marks LGBTQ+ Domestic Violence Awareness Day, a day to start conversations and support victims and survivors of domestic violence in queer relationships.

Keep an eye out on social media for how you can get involved.

If you or someone you know may be experiencing domestic violence, remember that your GP is always ready to hear your story.

For the latest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) news in Australia, visit qnews.com.au. Check out our latest magazines or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Dr Rhys Young

QNews, Brisbane Gay, App, Gay App, LGBTI, LGBTI News, Gay Australia

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