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Domestic Abuse: How to recognise the signs and seek help

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Domestic Abuse: How to recognise the signs and seek help


Sadly, it is too often the case that clients instruct us after they have been subject to years of abuse. We are often told that it is only with the benefit of hindsight that they fully realise the forms of abuse they had endured for so long.

There are often less obvious signs of domestic abuse at the outset of a relationship to be aware of including:  

  1. Being prevented from socialising with friends or family;
  2. Being prevented from going to work or furthering your education;
  3. Accusing you of flirting or having affairs;
  4. Telling you what to wear, say or think;
  5. Controlling your financial resources, preventing you from purchasing necessities or having to justify every purchase you make;
  6. Trying to justify abuse by blaming you and making you feel guilty; and
  7. Putting you down regularly and making you feel unworthy and insecure.
  8. Constant text messages, phone calls throughout the day to check up on you;
  9. Invading your personal space, following you wherever you go;
  10. Going through your phone and emails regularly;
  11. Pressurising/demanding you to engage in sexual activity.

Feeling afraid, threatened or changing the way you behave because you are fearful of your partner are also signs that you are in an abusive relationship.

How to Seek Help

Aside from telephoning the police is you ever feel concerned for your health and/or safety or for the health and/or safety of any children, there are various organisations that can help you feel safe and accommodate you should you decide to leave:

  1. Women’s Aid
  2. Women’s Refuge
  3. Men’s advice line
  4. The National Domestic Violence helpline

We understand that leaving an abusive relationship is extremely difficult especially if you have young children. The above organisations can help provide short-term solutions.

In the long term, there are two types of applications that can be made for the protection of yourself and any children. Legal advice would need to be sought to determine whether you meet the criteria to apply for the following Orders:

  1. Non-Molestation Order – This is an Order to protect from violence, threats of violence, verbal abuse, intimidation, pestering, harassment and damage to property.
  2. Occupation Order – This is an Order to suspend a party’s right to occupy a property.  

If you need advice in relation to Injunction Proceedings or any other family related matter, please call us and one of our team will be happy to assist you in any way possible.

We offer a Fixed Fee No Obligation Consultation for £75 plus VAT.