For Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, & Questioning
Survivors of Rape & Sexual Abuse
At Pandora's Project, we recognize the importance of providing support to fellow survivors that belong to minority groups that are not always accepted, understood or tolerated in mainstream society. All survivors are welcomed here, regardless of sexual orientation, sexual identification and gender expression / identity. We have many members who identify as LGBT, and many others who are questioning (or have questioned) their sexual identity. As a member of the Pandora's Aquarium message board, you will have the opportunity to participate and contribute to our thriving and active message board and chat rooms, which aim to provide peer support and foster healing. We respect people for whoever they are. In the words of some LGBT members:
"I often felt like I was never accepted anywhere...but Pandy's has helped me feel like I actually belong...This place accepts me, ALL of me."
"I have been challenged with all types of assumptions about why I am as I am. Pandy's has helped me decide that I don't need to justify this to anyone and that just I'm fine as I am"
Specifically for the survivor who is LGBTQ
At Pandy's, we acknowledge that sexual violence can result in the LGBT survivor needing to address specific, and potentially unique, issues and concerns. Acceptance and understanding among your peers plays a vital role in recovery, and it can be both comforting and beneficial to be able to share experiences and discuss relevant issues with other LGBT survivors who have travelled a similar road to yourself. Because of suggestions from LGBT members, we are now able to provide the following:
The LGBT Forum
We have a forum specifically for LGBTQ members and their supporters. In this forum, LGBTQ members are invited to discuss any issue which that they feel more comfortable discussing in an LGBT arena, or which is deemed particularly relevant for LGBT survivors. This forum is moderated by moderators who have knowledge and understanding of LGBT issues.
Examples of recent discussion areas within this forum include:
- Coming out to friends / family
- Did sexual abuse make me LGBT?
- Hate crimes - raped because of being LGBT?
- Learning to accept who you are.
- Incorrect assumptions / stereotypes of LGBT survivors.
- Questioning sexuality.
- Abuse within LGBT relationships.
- Same-sex abuse.
- Relationship and intimacy issues for LGBT survivors.
From time to time, moderated chats specifically for LGBTQ survivors are held. These chats focus on specific issues relevant to LGBTQ survivors, and chatters are often given the opportunity to suggest a topic for discussion. These chats often allow for a more detailed and focused discussion of LGBT issues which would not always be possible in the main chat rooms. They are advertised on the site well ahead of time, and all survivors are welcome to join.
We have many Essays and Articles which are accessible to the public. The majority of these are relevant for all survivors, but a number of them are particularly relevant for LGBT survivors. For example:
Coming out to family as GLBT
The problem with the belief that csa causes homosexuality / bisexuality.
Reclaiming your sexuality
Rape as a "Hate Crime" within the Lesbian Community
Domestic violence in lesbian relationships
Use your Voice. Break the Silence.
Other Resources for LGBT Rape & Sexual Abuse Survivors
Rainbow Hope: Online Support Group for Lesbians Survivors of Abuse and their Partners.
Survivor Project: a non-profit organization dedicated to addressing the needs of intersex and trans survivors of domestic and sexual violence.
Gay men's domestic violence project
Lambda: a non-profit, gay / lesbian / bisexual / transgender agency dedicated to reducing homophobia, inequality, hate crimes, and discrimination by encouraging self-acceptance, cooperation, and non-violence.
Lesbian and Gay Switchboard: Helpline: 020 7837 7324.
Broken Rainbow: 08452 604460 (for abuse within lesbian relationships).
Fflag: 0845 652 0311
NDV Helpline: 1-800-799-7233 or La red (ending abuse in same-sex relationships): 617-742-4911
National Gay and Lesbian Youth Hotline, 1-800-347-TEEN
US: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender (GLBT) Youth Support Line 800-850-8078
(USA)The Trevor Helpline: 1-866-4-U-TREVOR
Rainbow Youth Hotline: 1-877-LGBT-YTH (1-877-542-8984)
Gay and Lesbian Helpline: 03 9663 2939
Australia: Lesbian and Gay Anti-Violence Project: Freecall: 1800 063 060
NZ Gay Switchboard: (04) 473 7878 between 7.30 & 9.30pm 7 days
Though I can't change what has happened, I can choose how to react.
- Tori Amos