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What is Domestic Abuse?

What is Domestic Abuse?

The term ‘abuse’ can be subject to wide interpretation. The following Government definition helps to explain what domestic abuse is:

Abuse is a violation of an individual’s human and civil rights by any other person or persons’. 

Abuse may consist of a single act or repeated acts. It may be physical, verbal or psychological, it may be an act of neglect or an omission to act, or it may occur when a vulnerable person is persuaded to enter into a financial or sexual transaction to which he or she has not consented, or cannot consent.

Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in significant harm to, or exploitation of, the person subjected to it. Abuse may be perpetrated as the result of deliberate intent, negligence or ignorance.’

Significant harm could include physical harm or sexual abuse, as well as harm that affects mental health, or intellectual, emotional, social or behavioural development.

Learn more below:

Questions & Answers

Domestic abuse is a wider definition of physical violence and covers all types of abuse, including psychological, emotional, financial, sexual, online and coercive control, as well as the physical abuse.

If you are afraid of a partner, ex-partner or family member, this is usually a sign that something isn’t right. If you are afraid of the consequences of saying or doing certain things, because your partner, ex-partner or family member hurts you, threatens to hurt you, or emotionally or verbally abuses you this is domestic abuse. Signs to be aware of are your partner, ex-partner or family member:

  • Bullying, threatening or trying to control you
  • Cutting you off from friends or family members
  • Physically abusing you
  • Sexually abusing you
  • Controlling your money

If you recognise any of these behaviours in the relationship, you are experiencing domestic abuse. There are free, confidential support services available to help you to leave the relationship, keep yourself safe and move on from your experiences. For services in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, call the free, local helpline on 0808 80 200 28 for confidential advice and support.

Domestic abuse happens when one person tries to exert control over another person. A relationship, whether a partner relationship or a family relationship should be based on mutual respect and neither person should seek to control any aspect of the other person’s life, including finances, education and employment, health, friends, appearance, sex or way of life.

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