Challenges LGBTQIA people face

LGBTQIA (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Intersexual and Asexual) people face many challenges that affect their emotional, physical, sexual health and even their job security and safety. Here are some of the challenges they face daily…

Emotional challenges

There are many societal expectations that pressure LGBTQIA people to stay silent about their orientation. We all may experience negativity now and then, but being a member of the LGBTQIA community has some unique challenges.

Many of their challenges include being shamed by family and their communities for not living up to the traditional expectations placed on them. The pressures they face affect their relationships with others and put them at a higher risk of mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. 


Many LGBTQIA people face discrimination within their families, social circles and communities. There are many kinds of discrimination, for example being denied services, work opportunities or even their basic human rights because of sexual orientation. Discrimination makes many of these people feel unprotected and alienated.

It’s important to remember that this kind of discrimination affects LGBTQIA people who have openly come out, as well as those who are in the closet.

Health issues

Choma, did you know that LGBTQIA people, due to lack of information available as well as fear of discrimination, are more at risk of contracting Sexually Transmitted Infections (STDs) which go untreated and may develop into more serious diseases? For more information on having safe sex in same sex relationships, read this article.

Hate crimes

Because many people are ignorant or have been raised to see being LGBTQIA as a bad thing, LGBTQIA members are often targeted in hate crimes. These crimes can range from harassment (physical, verbal, online) to violent attacks such as corrective rape (which targets lesbian womxn by attackers who aim to change the victim’s sexuality).

Because many LGBTQIA people feel unwelcome in their communities, they are also less likely to report the crimes committed against them, either out of shame, guilt or fear. This means that little protection and help is given to them when they are victimised. 

It may be hard to read about the challenges that LGBTQIA people face but it’s important to learn and spread the word about them. The first step to promoting equality and fair treatment is to speak out. If you feel strongly about any LGBTQIA or gender-based issue, you do have a voice. Join the conversation by using the #DoneWithSilence hashtag on social media, and it will appear on our Campaign Posts wall.

Remember if you or a friend need advice or help, you can contact me here on Ask Choma, send me a Facebook Messagea Twitter DM, or a WhatsApp Message (071 172 3657).