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Domestic abuse

What domestic abuse is

Domestic abuse is any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse often caused by a partner or ex-partner, a family member or carer. Domestic abuse can happen to anyone regardless of gender, age, ethnicity or sexual orientation.

This could include:

  • Coercive control (a pattern of intimidation, degradation, isolation and control with the use or threat of physical or sexual violence)
  • Psychological and/or emotional abuse
  • Physical or sexual abuse, including inappropriate touching
  • Financial or economic abuse
  • Harassment and stalking
  • Online or digital abuse
  • Destruction of property and pets

It can commonly escalate from threats or name-calling to physical or sexual abuse and is rarely a one-off incident.

Children and pets can also be hurt by domestic abuse, or find it very upsetting and distressing to witness it.

Remember, both men and women can be victims of domestic abuse, and both men and women can be the abusers as well.

Women's Aid have information about challenging the myths around Domestic Abuse.