What is Domestic Abuse?

Domestic Abuse is made up of a wide range of different types of abuse and is totally unacceptable.  Abusive incidents are not usually one off events and can be seen as forming a pattern of controlling behaviour.  All abusive behaviours do not necessarily fall within the criminal justice system.  Abuse may be physical, emotional, psychological, sexual or financial.

It is bred on secrets and lies and usually occurs in private behind closed doors.  Victims of Domestic Abuse suffer on many levels.

Domestic Abuse will affect 1:4 women and 1:6 men at sometime in their lives and 90% of children are in the same or the next room when violence is occurring, very often getting caught up not only physically but emotionally in the abuse.

Obviously it is very upsetting for children to see one of their parents (or parent’s partners) abusing or attacking the other and they often show signs of great distress.

Children, boys and girls, with these problems usually do badly at school and often suffer from post traumatic stress disorder.

Domestic violence is a huge problem and is the most under reported crime in the country.  The cost to the nation and our communities runs into billions of pounds per year, not only for hospitalisations, but for visits to the A&E departments, for treatment to physical injuries and GPS surgeries, sometimes may years later for stress related disorders and mental health problems.

Individuls who have experienced abuse have little or no understanding of what happens to them in their realtionships and they are left with painful and confusing feelings, victims especially thinking that they are largely to blame for what has happened.  Despite this, people with these conditions, no matter how they were brought on, attract fear, hostility and disapproval rather than compassion, support and understanding.  Such reactions not only cause them to feel isolated and unhappy but may prevent them from obtaining help and treatment for themselves.

The need for specialist advice and support is considerable.  Although we live in one of the most beautiful parts of the country, if not the world, we still have the same problems as elsewhere.  Children make up one third of our populations  but are 100% of our future, therefore it is so important that adults within these families receive professional intervention in the form of advice, counselling and support to break out of the cycle of violence and this, in turn, will influence future generations..