Domestic abuse is a pattern of behaviour on the part of the abuser designed to control his partner. It can happen at any point in a relationship, including after you have split up.
Includes name-calling, threats and manipulation, blaming you for the abuse or ‘gas-lighting’ you.
Controlling your access to money or resources. He might take your wages, stop you working, or put you in debt.
Doesn’t have to be physical. He might manipulate or coerce you into doing things you don’t want to do.
When an abuser uses a pattern of behaviour over time to exert power and control. It is a criminal offence.
Not only hitting. He might restrain you or throw objects. He might pinch or shove you and claim it’s a ‘joke’.
He might send abusive texts, demand access to your devices, track you with spyware, or share images of you online.
It is natural to hope that your partner will change, or that the abuse will stop. Often, an abusive partner will be very sorry after an incident of abuse. He may beg for forgiveness. If you have left him, he may become very charming and convince you to return. He may be on his best behaviour for weeks, or even months, before he becomes abusive again.
The truth is that domestic abuse usually gets worse over time. There are perpetrator programmes for men who want to take responsibility for their abuse and change their behaviour for good. However, it is important that you prioritise your safety and wellbeing, and that of your children.
You are not alone
Abusers are also violent when sober. Many men who drink never use violence. These are all excuses.
There are many overlapping reasons why women may stay. Leaving is difficult and takes time. It is a process.
Violence is a choice an abuser makes; he alone is responsible. It is unrelated to childhood.
Domestic abuse happens to all women, regardless of where they live, their profession, or social background.
Men often claim their partner ‘makes them do it’. This is victim-blaming. The abuser alone is responsible.
Abusers say they ‘see red’ sometimes – but they are very much in control, using multiple methods to abuse.
Women do not enjoy violence. Most live in fear and terror. This is victim-blaming.
Domestic abuse is a crime. It is not an individual but a social problem. We all need to speak out against it.