The study found that among 160 homosexual male couples, 46% of the men reported “some form of intimate partner abuse” in just the past year, HealthDay News reports. The abuse took forms such as physical violence, sexual violence, emotional abuse, and controlling behavior.
The researchers also found that the abusive relationships tended not to communicate about HIV status or prevention, and that they could carry increased HIV risk since “victims may have little or no control over condom use or when and how the couple has sex.”
“If you just looked at physical and sexual violence in male couples, it's about 25 to 30 percent, roughly the same as women,” said study author Rob Stephenson, director of the University of Michigan's Center for Sexuality and Health Disparities.
In 2016, forensic psychologist Sarah Desmarais of North Carolina State University said that based on studies over a ten-year period, “about 23 per cent of women reported that they were victimized in relationships, whereas the rate was about 19 per cent for men.”
To explain the discrepancy between straight and gay abuse, the study purported to show an “important connection between internalized homophobia and violence reporting among couples.” Stephenson also noted that health care providers tended not to ask male couples about domestic abuse.
It also asserted that violence was “more common among partners who had experienced homophobic violence and who had traditionally hegemonic views of masculinity that they had difficulty negotiating.”
“A gay man who’s struggling with his identity might lash out at his partner with physical or emotional abuse as a stress response behavior,” a University of Michigan news release about the study explained, “similar to heterosexual couples, where an unemployed man lashes out at his female partner because he feels inadequate.”
To whatever extent internal unrest over same-sex attraction plays a part, that unrest is less likely to be due to societal “stigma” than at any point in American history.
Both major parties effectively treat same-sex “marriage” as a settled issue, homosexuality is actively promoted with increasing regularity in pop culture and public education, businesses are afraid to do businesses in states that are insufficiently “LGBT-friendly,” respectfully declining to promote same-sex events is considered legally perilous and politically scandalous, and even churches are divided on whether to compromise their traditional teachings on the subject.
Regardless, the latest findings are consistent with a 2015 Centers for Disease Control survey which found that 26% of homosexual men, 37% of bisexual men, 44% of lesbians, and 61% of bisexual women experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner at some point in their lives.
The Michigan study follows a National Bureau of Economic Research study also released this month which found “no relationship between legal access to same-sex marriage and self-rated health, substance use, or preventive care take-up for men in same-sex households.” Taken together, the studies seem to undermine the popular argument that government recognition of same-sex “marriage” would serve as a domesticating, strengthening force on homosexuality.