What is domestic violence


Abuse can be physical, emotional, sexual, mental

Domestic violence or abuse is the term used to describe the physical, emotional, sexual or mental abuse of one person by another, with whom they have, or have had, an intimate relationship. Domestic abuse is behaviour that seeks to secure power and control for the abuser and to undermine the safety, security and self- esteem of the abused woman.

Domestic violence is very common. It can happen in all kinds of relationships. It can take place between couples who are married, living together or just dating. It can also happen between other family members such as fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters etc. Domestic violence can happen to any women, regardless of her age, culture, ability, sexual orientation or social standing.

It is difficult to accept that someone you love and who is close to you is being abusive to you. Many women blame themselves or make excuses for their partner’s abusive behaviour. If you are being abused, remember it is not your fault. Abusers use some or all of the following forms of abuse to gain power and control. The descriptions below are only examples and are not exclusive. If you feel you are being abused contact us in confidence on our Helpline, 065-6822435.


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Examples of physical abuse include: hitting, punching, choking, burning, hair pulling, kicking, using weapons, being spat or urinated on, destroying property etc.


Emotional/verbal abuse includes name calling; derogatory remarks; constant criticism; threats to you, your children or family members; threatening to commit suicide; stalking (including cyber-stalking); destroying property; turning children against you; checking your mobile phone/emails/social media; harming or threatening to harm pets are all examples of emotional or psychological abuse.


Isolating you from family and friends; listening into your private conversations, not being allowed join local groups in case friendships build up; behaving so badly in front of your family and friends that they cease to visit you in your home; using jealousy to justify his actions.


Examples of financial abuse are – preventing you from getting or keeping a job; making you ask for money; not giving you money; selling household items to ensure that the family have no comforts.


Examples of sexual abuse are rape; forcing you to participate in any sexual act against your will; being forced to watch pornography; being deprived access to contraception; making you have sex with other men for money, etc.