What is domestic abuse?
Domestic abuse can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, sexuality or social standing. It includes abuse between partners, family members and former partners.
Broadly domestic abuse is identified as a pattern of incidents of controlling or abusive behaviours which doesn’t always include physical violence.
Physical abuse is any behaviour which hurts or harms or is intended to do so.
Threats can be as powerful and sometimes more powerful than physical violence, especially when a victim has suffered physical abuse or other forms of abusive behaviour.
Sexual abuse is any sexual act without consent including unwanted touching, forced sexual activity and rape.
Emotional / psychological abuse is often more subtle. Often those experiencing psychological abuse don’t even realise it’s happening. Emotional abuse includes a variety of behaviours that manipulate and undermine the victim, make them feel worthless and destroy their self esteem.
Verbal abuse can be shouting and making threats and other bullying behaviours. It is also using insults, derogatory comments, jokes and sarcasm.
Isolation is a common form of control. This is often disguised as protection and protection, making sure you’re safe. It can escalate into cutting off friends and family and restricting use of social media and monitoring movements.
Financial abuse can include taking control of all the finances, getting you into debt or restricting your access to money.
Stalking and harassment may seem normal and ordinary, however, when they are repeated they can be menacing and cause alarm. Constant calls and messages can initially seem caring but after a while can become distressing.