Ask yourself the following questions


The more ‘yes’ answers you give, the more likely it is that you are in an abusive relationship:


Are you: Do they:
Afraid some or most the time? Check up on you or go through your personal things?
Ridiculed, put down, made fun of or belittled? Swear or shout at you?
Worried about talking about certain subjects unless they’re in a good mood? Criticise how you look, what you say or what you do?
Making excuses or lying about the situation to other people? Stalk, harass, follow or threaten you?
Worrying that you’re going crazy? Stop you from seeing friends and family?
Being made to feel guilty or blamed for their behaviour? Force you to have sex against your will?
Feeling helpless, worthless depressed or suicidal? Push, hit, kick, bite, strangle or spit at you?

Each person’s situation is different but there are common characteristics of an abusive relationship.


The first step is to acknowledge these characteristics in order to then prevent and stop the abuse. This list can help you to recognise if you, or someone you know, are in an abusive relationship.


Domestic abuse usually takes the form of controlling behaviour which gets worse over time. Physical violence and threats may be used to maintain control, but it’s important to recognise that domestic abuse does not have to include physical violence, it may be in the form of psychological, financial or emotional abuse.

Physical Abuse:


Punching, slapping, hitting, biting, pinching, kicking, pulling hair out, pushing, shoving, burning, strangling, pinning you down, holding you by the neck,restraining you.


Emotional Abuse:


Verbal abuse, destructive criticism, threats, insults, degradation, being isolated from friends and family.


Psychological Abuse: 


Threats, checking up on you, monitors your calls/texts/emails/social media, mind games, prevents you going out alone.


Sexual Abuse:


Using force, threats to make you perform sexual acts, having sex when you don’t want it, forcing you to look at pornographic material, forcing you to have sex with other people.


Economic Abuse: 


Withholding money, preventing you from getting/keeping a job, no access to bank and savings accounts.

For Advice: 01473 228 270


Our helpline provides advice and support to women
experiencing domestic abuse.


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