LGBTQIA+ RELATIONSHIP COUNSELLING
While there are many similar features amongst all relationships, there are also unique challenges and benefits that can present for she’s, he’s, and they’s identifying as LGBTQIA+ in relationships.
BENEFITS OF LGBTQIA+ RELATIONSHIPS:
Queer relationships tend to be more equal on average, as there is less of an emphasis on conforming to the restrictive gender roles inherent in cisgender heteronormative relationships.
Research by Gottman has shown that during arguments, couples within the LGBTQIA+ spectrum tend to be nicer and more respectful of each other, and there is less belligerence, domineering and less inciting fear than heteronormative couples in the main. They also found that queer couples are able to use more humour when conflict arises.
In addition, gender-diverse/non-heteronormative relationships often have a greater flexibility in roles in the relationship and usually take time to work out an acceptable balance of household roles for each partner.
CHALLENGES OF LGBTQIA+ RELATIONSHIPS:
- Identifying as a person outside of the cisgender heteronormative parameters can result in different barriers to dating and relationships. This can be due to less availability of like-minded folx the community, and associated challenges with identifying potential queer partners, as well as;
- Managing prevailing negative attitudes, discrimination, or ignorance in the community can create additional stress and anxiety for peoples in the LGBTQIA+ community.
- The act of ‘coming out’ often improves a partner’s wellbeing and relationship, but may also make the relationship with their parents more conflicted, which adds to the relationship stress.
- Monogamy isn’t always assumed a given, and LGBTQIA+ relationships are no exception to this – problems can arise if couples can’t agree with how open their relationship should be.
- Demonstrating commitment can be a challenge in cultural settings where there is a lack of legal or social recognition of LGBTQIA+ relationships, and finding ways to demonstrate commitment is crucial when the romance fades.
- Like heteronormative relationships, boundaries can be more difficult for queer couples and can take work to clarify with each other. A common question is, “How does a relationship differ from a friendship?” It is common for couples to remain friends when a relationship is over. Often couples may remain living together when a new partner appears. Some couples may decide not to live together. Some may choose to combine their finances or live independently while residing in the same house. It is therefore important to explore and find unique solutions for each couple that works for them.
- Due to all the above factors, research has shown that LGBTQIA+ relationships tend to be especially vulnerable to breaking to break down in comparison to heteronormative relationships.
Creating a healthy happy relationship with your same sex partner
Building a healthy and happy relationship while negotiating many of these challenges is not always easy. Our Psychologists at the Hart Centre are sensitive to the issues that are involved with same sex relationships and can help you negotiate and resolve these and any other issues and difficulties you have in your relationship with our Same Sex Relationships & Counselling.
Call 1300 830 552 and our friendly receptionists will help you find the best Psychologist for your needs or contact us here.