What is domestic abuse?
Domestic Abuse is any abusive behaviour between family members or people aged over 16 who are in a relationship with each other (or have been in the past).
Family members are defined as mother, father, sister, brother and grandparents, whether directly related, in-laws or stepfamily.
Abusive behaviour may include:
- violent or threatening behaviour
- controlling or coercive behaviour (a pattern of intimidation, degradation, isolation and control with the use or threat of physical or sexual violence)
- psychological, emotional abuse
- physical abuse
- sexual abuse
- financial or economic abuse
- harassment and stalking
- online or digital abuse
- so-called honour based violence
- Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)
- forced marriages
Domestic abuse can happen regardless of social group, class, age, race, disability or sexuality of the individuals involved.
The violence can begin at any stage of the relationship and may continue after the relationship has ended.
It is a pattern of controlling and aggressive behaviour that is used by abusers designed to establish and maintain power and control over another person.
If you think you need to leave your home, try arranging temporary accommodation before you leave, this could be staying with friends or relatives while you think about what to do next or if this is not an option contact the council.
If you are planning to leave, try to take some essentials with you:
- change of clothes
- any medication you need to take on a regular basis.
- important items such as your passport, bank and credit cards and mobile phone