Counselling for Domestic Abuse
Do you change your behaviour because you’re frightened of your partner’s reaction? Do you spend your life walking on eggshells? Do you feel isolated from friends and family and don’t know where to turn? Counselling for domestic abuse victims is the lifeline you are looking for…
What is Domestic Abuse?
The UK government’s definition of domestic violence 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 psychological, physical, sexual, financial, emotional.’
Domestic abuse is a type of control which can take many forms:
- Physical abuse or violence
- Mental abuse
- Financial abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Forced marriage
- FGM (female genital mutilation)
- Emotional abuse
- Online abuse
- Honour-based violence
Exact figures are difficult to gauge as there are so many cases of domestic abuse which go unreported. However estimates show that 45% women and 26% of men in the UK have experienced at least one incident of domestic abuse since the age of 16 years (Walby and Allen, 2004). Research shows that 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men will experience physical violence by their intimate partner or family member at some point during their lifetimes.
According to the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) 2019, an estimated 7.5% of women (1.6 million) and 3.8% of men (786,000) experienced domestic abuse in the last year and women aged 20 to 24 years were more likely to be victims of any domestic abuse in the last year than women aged 25 years and over. There is often a ‘cycle of abuse’, meaning that abusers have witnessed or experienced domestic violence in their own childhoods and then go on to perpetrate it throughout their adult lives.
Alarmingly, two women per week are killed by a current or former partner in the UK. Getting help for domestic abuse is a very important step to finding safety, support and freedom.
How Can Counselling Help Victims?
Victims of domestic abuse often don’t recognise that the abuse they are experiencing is a serious problem that needs addressing. Victims often ignore the magnitude of the problem by saying things such as ‘he only pushed me a few times’ or ‘he didn’t hit me that hard’, or ‘I wound him up and made him angry’… When domestic abuse is regular and consistent, it is hard to see what is acceptable behaviour and what is not.
People suffering at the hands of a domestic abuser often stay in the relationship in the hope that the perpetrator will stop. For an abuser to change and address their anger issues (link to anger page), work needs to be done in order to ‘fix’ the problems they themselves are experiencing. It is uncommon for abusers to change their pattern of behaviour and so victims need to be realistic in their expectations, and get themselves help to break away from domestic abuse.
Domestic violence is NEVER ok, and it is never the fault of the victim. You are not to blame and you need to find a safe space to speak and be listened to. Your partner may tell you that nobody will believe you or help you. That is not the case. Counselling for domestic abuse victims offers you the help you deserve. You are not alone and we are here to help you.
Counselling for victims of domestic abuse can prove a lifeline when you don’t know where else to turn. We can point you in the direction of support services which can help you financially and offer you shelter. Let us give you the help you deserve today and look forward to a lighter, brighter, happier ‘you’.
Important– Domestic abuse is a crime. If you are in danger please call 999 or your local police station and report the abuse.
Our dedicated counsellors are thoroughly trained in counselling domestic abuse victims safely, and have many years of experience in offering counselling for domestic abuse victims. Get in touch with our team today to get the support you deserve.