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What is domestic abuse?

Domestic abuse is any incident of physical, emotional, sexual, financial or mental abuse between adults who are or have been intimate partners of family members, regardless of gender or sexuality.

Warning signs:

Child sitting on stairs while parents argue

  • Is your partner jealous or possessive?
  • Is your partner bossy; does he/she give you orders?
  • Does your partner threaten to hurt you?
  • Does your partner call you names, criticize you, humiliate you and verbally abuse you?
  • Does your partner makes all the decisions in the relationship and control all the money?
  • Does your partner have a violent temper, have a violent history and have weapons?
  • Does your partner not let you have friends of the opposite sex?
  • Does your partner pressure you for sex?
  • Does your partner constantly want to be with you and want to know where you are at all times?
  • Does your partner have a history of bad relationships and blames the “ex”?
  • Are you afraid of your partner?

If so you may be in danger of experiencing abuse within the relationship.

Domestic abuse is rarely a one-off event.  It tends to escalate in frequency and severity over time.

Is domestic abuse just happening to me?

No; it’s more common than people think.  Research shows that it can affect one in four women in their lifetimes and on average, a woman is assaulted at least 35 times before she seeks help.  Domestic abuse claims, on average, the lives of two women each week and 30 men a year.

 Is it my fault?

No, everyone is entitled to live in a safe environment free from fear.  Nobody has to put up with control or abuse by another person.  Talking about it to someone can help you make sense of what is happening to you and will mean that you are not alone.