Recognising Abuse

Helping you to recognise the signs and identify whether you are experiencing domestic abuse

This list may help you to identify whether you are experiencing domestic violence:

Signs of abuse
  • Are you afraid of your partner?
  • Do you feel isolated? Does they cut you off from family and friends?
  • Are they jealous and possessive?
  • Do they humiliate or insult you?
  • Do they verbally abuse you?
  • Do they say you are useless and couldn’t cope without them?
  • Do they physically hurt you? Do they shove, slap, punch or kick you?
  • Have they threatened to hurt you or people close to you?
  • Do they constantly criticise you?
  • Do they have sudden changes of mood which dominate the household?
  • Are they charming one minute and abusive the next? Like Dr Jekyll / Mr Hyde?
  • Do they control your money?
  • Do you change your behaviour to avoid triggering an attack?
  • Are you unsure of your own judgement?
  • Do they damage your possessions?
  • Do they smash up the furniture?
  • Do they threaten to harm or kill the pets?
  • Do they threaten to kidnap or get custody of the children?
  • Do they drive fast because they know it scares you?
  • Do they tell you what to wear or how to do your hair?
  • Do they lock you out of the house during an argument?

Domestic abuse isn’t just physical. It can be a combination of physical, psychological or financial abuse.

Not all abusers will display the same signs to the same extent, but there are many behaviours that are common to situations of domestic abuse.

In some cases, an abuser may only display one or two behaviours but they may be very exaggerated (for example, extreme jealousy over minor issues). In a lot of cases, the abuser may explain his or her behaviour as a result of love and / or concern for the victim, which may initially seem flattering.

However as this behaviour continues, it may eventually become more severe and end up dominating, controlling or manipulating the victim. For further information visit the Hidden Hurt website.

Just because someone does not look like a “typical victim” does not mean he or she is not suffering from domestic abuse. Domestic violence can happen to anyone.