Understanding Domestic Violence And Abuse; Recognizing The Signs

Understanding Domestic Violence And Abuse; Recognizing The Signs


“Sorry I have to write this, we have been talking about domestic violence but we are not talking about how to stop or control it?

Like is there any agency set up for it, do we have a place for victims etc”. Yes there a quite a number of agencies that deal with it directly, especially when the victim needs immediate help.

This is a comment by one of our amiable followers and a very brilliant one at that. And in lieu of this very comment and many more like it we keep getting in our inbox, we have decided to give a very basic insight into what domestic violence is and it presents.

Just like he said, we have been talking about domestic violence, domestic violence, domestic violence. What really is domestic violence? Can we at least have a basic working knowledge of what domestic violence is, what forms of domestic violence there are, immediate steps to take as a victim.Before we go further, here is one of the most simplified definition i came across.

“The cross-government (gov.uk) definition of domestic violence and abuse is:

any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. The abuse can encompass, but is not limited to:






Controlling behaviour

Controlling behaviour is a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.

Coercive behaviour

Coercive behaviour is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim.”

This is not a legal definition….source..www.gov.uk

Finding out how you can keep yourself safe and organizations that can help you are very necessary and important steps.

So this might really be of help if you:

Are in abusive relationship

Don’t know what to do about it

Don’t know where to go

Don’t know what your rights are

Need to know where to get help

 Now, my understanding of  what Is domestic violence?

Domestic violence, also called intimate partner violence, happens in many forms including physical, emotional and economic violence, and can affect people of any age. It does not have to be within the home to be classified as domestic violence. It is a form of violence that can occur within any relationship (family or intimate partner). Domestic violence is about power and control and there are many ways this control can be expressed.

If someone is hurting you it can be very scary and it may be hard to know how you can stop it. It is important to remember that no one has the right to be violent towards and there are people out there who can help of which Unbroken Chords is one.

Types of Intimate Partner Violence

Domestic violence and abuse may take various forms ranging from Physical, Emotional, Economic and  Social. t prominent forms: For today we will be looking at the Physical and the emotional type of abuse.

Physical – physical abuse basically involves a person using physical force which causes or could cause harm. It is the most visible form of abuse and there are a couple of different types of physical a person may experience. Physical violence can be something that tends to start slowly, a shove, a slight push, a slap, twisting of arm or holding any part of your body in way that leaves you with bruises. It could present as the abuser throwing and breaking stuff, though not directly aimed at you but could cause you harm. this list could go on but the important part here is for us all to have an insight into what physical abuse can present like.

  Does any of the below looks familiar to you? If yes, please seek for advice, talk to someone now!

Feeling afraid of your partner all the time

Avoiding certain topics because you’re afraid of making your partner angry

Feeling like you can’t do anything right, or you are walking on eggshells around their anger and rages

Believing that you deserve to be hurt or mistreated

Feeling emotionally numb

These points above are some of the red flags; there might be a problem if these factors are in check.


Some types of physical abuse include:

Scratching or biting

Pushing or shoving



Choking or strangling

Throwing things

Forced feeding or denial of food

Use of weapons

Physical restraint (such as pinning against a wall, floor, bed etc

How it starts?

Many survivors of physical abuse say that the violence started small with just a slap or a push, then got more intense over time.

An abuser will often blame something or someone else for the violence, including blaming the victim for saying or doing something which caused the violent behaviour. Sometimes the abuser will excuse their behaviour as being a result of alcohol or drugs, stress or frustration.

It is also quite common for the abuser to be apologetic after the assault. The person who behaved violently will quite regret their actions, which makes it more difficult for the victim of assault to leave the relationship.

If you have been physically abused it is really important that you seek help. physical abuse isn’t something that you should have to deal with on your own and the right support will make handling the situation much easier on you, and that is exactly what UNBROKEN CHORDS stands for.

Emotional – this is also one form of abuse that people can experience in a relationship. Though emotional abuse doesn’t leave physical scars, it can have a huge impact on your confidence and self-esteem. So if you find yourself feeling like you’re not good enough, are afraid of your partner leaving you, are called names by your partner or they put you down, are afraid, threatened or intimidated, feel like you are going crazy, or confused about the truth, then there is problem.

The aim of emotional abuse is to chip away at a person’s feelings of self-worth and independence. In an emotionally abusive relationship, a person may feel that there is no way out of the relationship or that without their partner they will have nothing.

Emotional abuse can feel equally as destructive and damaging as physical abuse and can do a terrible amount of damage to a person’s mental health. It’s common for physical abusive relationships to also include aspects of emotional abuse as this is how power and control is maintained within the relationship.

Some types of emotional abuse can include:

Verbal – yelling, insulting or swearing at someone

Rejection – pretending not to notice someone’s presence, conversation or value

Put downs – name calling, public embarrassment, calling someone stupid, blaming them for everything

Being afraid – causing someone to feel afraid, intimidated or threatened

Isolation – limiting freedom of movement, stopping someone from contacting other people (like friends or family)

Money – controlling someone’s money, withholding money, preventing someone from working, stealing or taking money

Bullying – purposely and repeatedly saying or doing hurtful things to someone.

Though physical violence is often seen as being more serious than emotional abuse, this is not the case. The scars of emotional abuse are real and long lasting. Emotional abuse can leave a person feeling depressed, anxious and even suicidal, as well as having a negative impact on self-esteem and confidence.


Haven said all these, now I’m in an abusive relationship – what should I do?

If you are in an abusive relationship, the most important thing is to do all you can to stay safe. This can be very hard, but this is why we UNBROKEN CHORDS are here, and there are other government agencies that can help you plan for safety.

Now if you are living with your partner, you want to make the following measures to ensure your safety.

Are you in immediate danger? If you are in danger of being hurt, or you are worried about your safety, please contact police or other emergency services,  call 112 immediately and try to move somewhere safe. You can also inbox us so we can refer you to one ASAP.

Do you have support? Making a decision to leave a situation where you feel unsafe may be hard and scary. If possible, talk to someone you trust, like a friend, family member, counsellor who understands domestic violence. You also can always talk to UNBROKEN CHORDS any day any time and we can give you relevant information on seeking help, you can be sure of that.

Trust yourself: if someone is hurting you or threatening to, it can be hard to maintain your self-confidence. Remember it is NEVER OK for someone to hurt you or threaten to hurt you for any reason.

Know your rights: it may also be a good idea to check out your legal rights you know.

So now Where Will I Go?

Well, first of all, recognizing that there is a problem is the first stage of getting help and there are a number of options available if you need to get out fast. It’s really important to remember that you are not alone.

Some options include:

Refuges: a shelter or refuge is a place where you can seek temporary accommodation to sort out your next steps. There are also usually a number of other services available in refuges, including legal advice, emotional support, practical help (like food and clothing), and good security.

Family or friends: if you can, please get in contact with a family member or friend that you trust and ask if you can stay with them while you work out what to do next.

Domestic violence is a very serious issue, like we said earlier; it is not something that you should have to deal with on your own either as a victim or as a survivor. We don’t have to lose more lives to this menace. We at UNBROKEN CHORDS are doing our part, we cannot do it alone, you too can do your part, ever one has a part to play to curb this problem, and together we all can successfully #SayNoToDomesticViolence.

#TogetherWeCan #SayNoToDomesticViolence