I’ve written info and advice based on my own personal experience and opinions of services, however others may have very different experiences/opinions to me (for example having a service specifically run by and for women is very important to me, you may be less fussed!) and with helplines for example it depends partly on the person you happen to speak to.

Helplines – Domestic Abuse

 

Broken Rainbow – 0300 999 5428, Mon 2pm-8pm, Wed 10am-5pm, Thur 2pm-8pm

The only helpline especially for LGBT domestic abuse survivors. At the end of the call they ask you ‘monitoring questions’ about your age, ethnicity, orientation and other stuff so it’s worth thinking about whether you’re comfortable with answering these questions or not before you call (they’re fine if you say you’d rather not answer.)

National Domestic Violence Helpline – 0808 2000 247, open 24-7

Really difficult to get through, but I found them pretty helplful once I did and open to lesbian callers.  The number won’t show up on BT phone bills but it might do for other phone companies. Free from landlines, women-only service.

Wales Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0800 8010 800, open 24-7

These women are awesome. Treated me with total respect, never used the word ‘victim’ and again open to lesbian callers.

Scottish Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0800 027 1234, open 24-7

No personal experience. Women-only helpline.

Helplines – Sexual Abuse

 

Rape Crisis National Helpline – 0808 802 9999, every day 12-2.30 and 7-9.30

Again really difficult to get through, haven’t spoken to them myself but they sound good and are women-only. You can also have a look here for local Rape Crisis helplines in England and Wales.

Rape Crisis Scotland – 08088 01 03 02, every day 6pm-midnight

No personal experience. Women-only helpline.

Books

Naming the Violence – Speaking Out About Lesbian Battering Edited by Kerry Lobel.

Lesbians Talk Violent Relationships Joelle Taylor and Tracey Chandler

Woman-to-Woman Sexual Violence – Does She Call it Rape? Lori B Girshick

No More Secrets – Violence in Lesbian Relationships Janice L Ristock

The Mirror Within – A New Look at Sexuality Anne Dickson. Not about lesbians or domestic abuse specifically, but I found this book really useful in learning about my sexuality and developing my confidence and self-esteem.

Support Groups

I live in hope that one day there will be special support groups for lesbian survivors of domestic abuse. In the meantime, your local women’s refuge should run The Freedom Programme which is aimed at women who’ve been abused by men but a lot of what we experience is the same so you might still find it helpful.

PACE sometimes run a support group in London for LGBT domestic abuse survivors (one group for both men and women).

Online Articles, Videos and Other Links

Video aimed at LBT women – slightly patronising, but great that someone’s talking about it.

Women’s Aid Survivors Forum Female survivors share their experiences and support each other.

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