Recognising domestic abuse and how to get support

The police receive a call for help relating to domestic abuse every 30 seconds.

Does your partner, ex-partner or someone you live with:

  • cut you off from family and friends and intentionally isolate you?
  • bully, threaten, or control you?
  • take control of your finances?
  • monitor or limit your use of technology?
  • physically and/or sexually abuse you?

Domestic abuse is not always physical violence. It can also include:

  • coercive control and ‘gaslighting’ (when a perpetrator makes his or her partner question and doubt their own perceptions, memory, judgement and sanity)
  • economic abuse (when an abuser restricts a person’s ability to acquire, use and maintain money or other economic resources)
  • online abuse
  • threats and intimidation
  • emotional abuse
  • sexual abuse

Anyone can be a victim of domestic abuse, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, sexuality or background.

If you believe that you are a victim of domestic abuse, there are signs that you can look out for including:

  • being withdrawn, or being isolated from your family and friends
  • having bruises, burns or bite marks on you
  • having your finances controlled, or not being given enough to buy food, medication or pay bills
  • not being allowed to leave your house, or stopped from going to college or work
  • having your internet or social media use monitored, or someone else reading your texts, emails or letters
  • being repeatedly belittled, put down or told you are worthless
  • being pressured into sex or sexual contact
  • being told that abuse is your fault, or that you’re overreacting

1 in 4 women will experience domestic abuse in her lifetime.

Get help and support

All forms of domestic abuse are not acceptable in any situation.  If you’re experiencing domestic abuse and feel frightened of, or controlled by, a partner, an ex-partner or family member, it’s important to remember that it’s not your fault and there is no shame in seeking help.

It may seem like a difficult step to take, but there is free, confidential support and advice available to victims and their concerned family members or friends, 24 hours a day.

Changing Pathways offer support to women and their children in the Basildon area. Telephone 0330 333 7 444 (8am – 5pm, Monday to Friday).

Refuge  are a national organisation that offer support to women and their children and have a domestic Abuse helpline; Telephone 08082000247 (open 24 hrs/day, every day).

Men’s Advice Line 0808 8010327 : Monday to Friday 10am-8pm.

Galop  the LGBT+ Domestic Abuse helpline : 0800 999 5428 : Monday to Friday 10am-5pm.