What is Domestic Abuse?

Domestic abuse can take many forms including physical and sexual abuse to controlling and coercive behaviour by a partner, ex-partner or family member. One in four women and one in six men will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime.

This also includes ‘honour based’ violence, female genital mutilation, forced marriage and incidents of human trafficking.

The abuse can include, but is not limited to:

  • Psychological - making you feel devalued and afraid, if you are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgender (LGBT) this may include threatening to ‘out’ you
  • Physical - kicking, punching and restraining you
  • Sexual - rape, making you do things you don’t want to do, preventing you from practicing safe sex
  • Economical - taking your money and/or controlling your money
  • Emotional - making you feel unhappy

Domestic abuse also includes controlling behaviour – such as isolating you from family and friends and coercive control which includes behaviour to frighten or humiliate you. This includes some common traits, such as:

  • Threats and intimidation- verbal aggression, escalating to physical violence
  • Control - limiting access to your money, restricting your contact with family and friends, controlling your diet. Preventing you from making your own decisions, acting possessively and excessively jealous
  • Disrespect - putting you down, criticising you in front of family and friends, calling you insulting names



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