DV Conference Report #8: Violence is more common in lesbian relationships than in heterosexual ones

Sacramento, CA–Background: The historic, one-of-a-kind conference “From Ideology to Inclusion: Evidence-Based Policy and Intervention in Domestic Violence” was held in Sacramento, California February 15-16 and was a major success. The conference was sponsored by the California Alliance for Families and Children and featured leading domestic violence authorities from around the world.

Many of these researchers are part of the National Family Violence Legislative Resource Center, which is challenging the domestic violence establishment’s stranglehold on the issue. The NFVLRC promotes gender-natural, research-based DV policies.

I have been and will continue to detail the conference and some of the research that was presented there in this blog–to learn more, click here.

Dr. Donald Dutton is one of the premier domestic violence authorities in the world. He co-founded the Assaultive Husbands Project in 1979 and has published more than 100 papers and books, including the Domestic Assault of Women, The Batterer: A Psychological Profile, The Abusive Personality, and his latest work, Rethinking Domestic Violence. Dr. Dutton can be reached at

One of the issues Dr. Dutton discussed at the conference is domestic violence between lesbians. This is an important and relevant issue, of course, in part because it provides a look at Intimate Partner Violence without the pervasive assumption that the violence in families is almost always caused by men. It also allows us to examine Intimate Partner Violence outside of the feminist Duluth model, which says that it is men who commit IPV, and they do so as part of their role in the patriarchy.

Dutton cited one study of 1,100 lesbian or bisexual women who are in abusive lesbian relationships. The study, which was conducted in Phoenix, found that the women were more likely to have experienced violence in their previous relationships with women than in their previous relationships with men.

Dutton explained that in general research shows that domestic violence is more common in lesbian relationships than in heterosexual relationships.

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