Domestic abuse is widespread and often goes unreported. There are many fears around domestic abuse and often the abused person has become worn down by their abuser, as well as the constant criticisms and insults. Many believe they have somehow contributed to the situation. We are all responsible for our own behaviour. An abuser is 100% responsible for their words and their actions. Many abusers justify their actions by saying their partner provokes them, or “makes them” do things. This is nonsense. No one holds a gun to an abusers head and forces them – there can be NO excuses for abusers.
Definition of domestic abuse:
“Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.”
The behaviour captured in this definition includes:
“… a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim”.
Source: Home Office
Last year ministers redefined domestic abuse, telling forces and other criminal justice agencies that it included both violence and acts of psychological control that left victims in terror. There are a string of laws that already cover acts of violence, stalking and harassment – but none of them refer in their wording to personal relationships or the precise terms of the official definition of domestic abuse.
Thankfully, new laws are being introduced into the UK that could see this harmful and damaging behaviour be dealt with more seriously. Domestic abuse not only affects adults, but also the children/family members witnessing the abuse.Abusers could be charged with a criminal offence for psychological abuse. Mrs May said: “The government is clear that abuse is not just physical. Victims who are subjected to a living hell by their partners must have the confidence to come forward. I want perpetrators to be in no doubt that their cruel and controlling behaviour is criminal.
Abusers are clever, they re-programme their partners to believe that they are the cause of the abuse. That somehow it is something they are doing wrong. The abuser justifies their behaviour.
Similarly, digital domestic abuse such as cyberstalking is becoming an increasingly prevalent issue for many individuals. As a preventive measure, we found a guide that might shed light on such experiences as well as what to do in such situations. The guidance in this link covers a wide range of scenarios as a cyberstalker could of course be an ex-partner or indeed a stranger. To read said guide, click here.
Types of Abuse:
Physical abuse – hitting, shoving, pushing, slapping, physical force
Emotional abuse – belittling and criticising, name calling, insults, verbal abuse where a person’s character is attacked
Mental abuse – abusers lead their partners to believe the deserve the abuse. They constantly remind their partner of all their shortcoming. People with low self esteem are far more likely to succumb to an abuser’s behaviour. People with dysfunctional upbringings may also be more vulnerable.
Limiting your social life, limiting access to finances, controlling your behaviour – such as what you wear, where you go etc are all signs of abuse. Jealousy and possessiveness are also forms of abuse when control becomes a part of the picture. Prosecutions for domestic violence in Britain nearly tripled from 35,000 in 2005 to 103,000 last year, and the conviction rate increased from 46 per cent to 74 per cent.
Abusers now face the possibility of a prison sentence. No one should have the right to denigrate another, insult them or treat them in a disrespectful manner.
See my YouTube video for more info on the signs to look for – are you in an abusive relationship? Domestic abuse is rife, be part of the new movement to report these bullies and get your life back.
Photo by moggs oceanlane