There are many reasons why people stay in abusive relationships. These include:

  • they may not recognise their partner’s behaviour as abusive. Some LGBTIQ people think that domestic and family violence only happens in non-LGBTIQ relationships, so they don’t see it as something that can happen to them;
  • they may fear being ‘outed’ or discriminated against if they seek help;
  • they are committed to the relationship and may believe that they can work it out with their partner;
  • they don’t want to leave their home, their children or their pets;
  • they are afraid of what their partner will do if they leave;
  • they are dependent on their partner financially or for care needs;
  • the abusive partner is sick and their partner doesn’t want to leave them alone;
  • they feel shame and don’t want everyone to know about the abuse;
  • they love their partner and want to believe the promises that ‘it will never happen again’; or
  • domestic and family violence is about power and control. They may not yet feel strong enough to make the break.