Peer support is when we use our own experiences to help each other. It can take many forms, from LGBTIQ+ support groups and services to one-on-one support from friends.
Everyone’s experience of online abuse is different. Depending on your exact situation, you might be feeling annoyed, angry, humiliated, embarrassed, overwhelmed, depressed or downright devastated.
Research shows you are not alone. Most Australians who have been through online abuse experience high levels of distress. Many people report that it has affected their self-esteem, mental health and physical wellbeing. It can also affect relationships with friends, family and intimate partners.
The most important thing to remember is it is not your fault and you are not alone. If you have been affected by any of the types of online abuse, reach out to your friends, supportive family and the wider LGBTIQ+ community.
Share your experience with a friend
Talking to someone who has been through a similar experience can help you to realise that you are not alone. Connecting with someone and telling them about what you have been through can help to lift your mood and create a profound shift in how you feel about any negative online experiences.
Use peer support networks
There are many LGBTIQ+ support groups on social media for people of diverse genders and sexualities, so search for one that is right for you or ask for a recommendation from a friend. There are also many LGBTIQ+ support services across Australia that can help you to get the support you need.
Strengthen your connections with the LGBTIQ+ community
The value of community connection is undeniable. Being connected with a community of like-minded peers can improve your mental health and give you the opportunity to lead a meaningful life. Community connectedness not only helps you but also helps to support the community organisations themselves.
Reach out to one of the many LGBTIQ+ support services and community networks across Australia and become an active participant. You can also explore more services on the ABC Queer and LGBTIQ+ support services page.
You can support others in many ways, whether by sharing your personal experience of online abuse, becoming part of a support group or learning new ways in which you can support others. Learn more about how to help a friend of family member deal with adult cyber abuse.
All ages. Counselling and referral for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and/or intersex. Phone counselling available from 3pm to 12am, every day. Online chat available 3pm to 12am, every day.