Breaking the Silence

Domestic abuse, often known as domestic violence, is a deeply concerning issue affecting many relationships. It comes in many forms, often extremely subtle so how can you recognise it and how you can get legal support?

What is domestic abuse?

Domestic abuse is a pattern of behaviour used by one partner to maintain power and control over another within a relationship. The behaviour can be physical, emotional, sexual, financial, or digital abuse.

It can also be controlling behaviour, with coercive control being one of its subtle yet profoundly damaging aspects. It is important to recognise the signs, and importantly, break the cycle.

What is coercive control?

Coercive control is subtle. The abuser may be manipulative, intimidating, and use psychological tactics to dominate their partner. Unlike physical abuse, coercive control operates on emotional and mental levels, making it harder to recognise. Victims can become isolated from friends and family because their partner is monitoring them, or limiting their access to money. They may also doubt their perceptions and feelings because they are being ‘gaslighted’, which is when the abuser uses manipulation to make victims question their own sanity or powers of reasoning.

What legal advice is available?

There are steps which can be taken to put legal protections such as Non-Molestation and Occupation Orders.

A Non-Molestation Order gives protection from violence, threats and intimidation and harassment. Breaching this order is an arrestable offence and can lead to imprisonment.

An Occupation Order deals with living arrangements within a family home and grants a right to stay in the home, or restricts another family member from entering or living in the same property even if they are a legal owner. This order is especially important in domestic violence situations, as it allows victims and their children to remain in their homes without fear.

Such court orders can be obtained from the Family Court. Legal advice from a family law solicitor is crucial and will help you understand your rights and options fully.

Take action

Domestic abuse and coercive control have no place in a healthy relationship. Understanding the signs, seeking help, and empowering yourself are essential steps toward breaking free from the cycle of abuse. Remember, you are not alone, and there is help available.

Written By

Published: 24th October 2023
Area: Family

Get In Touch

Dipika provides clear advice from the outset. Her financial cases involve substantial assets, property division, investments, protecting pension interests and businesses. She is particularly adept in understanding the emotional complexities in matrimonial disputes and the impact this will have on reaching resolutions.

How We Can Help

Our Latest Family Updates

Our experts are here to answer any questions you might have

If you’d like to speak to a member of our team, please fill out the enquiry form. We will aim to reply to your query within 2 hours

Need to talk to someone sooner? You can call using the number below

Call Us: 0330 024 0333