Support for family and friends
If someone you know is experiencing
Information for family and friends
If you think a friend or family member is experiencing domestic abuse, there are things you can do to help.
IF YOU OR YOUR FRIEND OR FAMILY MEMBER ARE IN IMMEDIATE DANGER
YOUR PERSONAL SAFETY IS OF PARAMOUNT IMPORTANCE
What to say
The following messages will all help your friend if you can get them across when talking about their situation.
- Domestic abuse is totally unacceptable. Everyone has the right to live their life free of violence, abuse, intimidation and fear.
- Domestic abuse is very common. One woman in four and one in six men experience domestic abuse at some point in their life.
- Domestic abuse is very dangerous. Each week in the UK, two women are killed by a partner or ex-partner. Men are also killed by their partners or ex partners.
- Domestic abuse is about power and control. Abusive, violent and sexually abusive behaviour is wide-ranging and subtle in what it tries to achieve.
- Domestic abuse is intentional and instrumental behaviour. It is about scaring someone into doing something that they don’t want to do, or scaring them out of doing something that they do want to do.
- The abuser is 100 per cent responsible for the abuse. Alcohol, culture or unemployment are excuses for, not causes of, domestic abuse. The abusive behaviour is the abusers problem and their responsibility.
- It is not your fault. No-one deserves to be abused, regardless of what they say or do.
- Domestic abuse does impact on children. Even when they aren not being directly abused themselves, children are affected.
- An abusive partner can change if they want to. Their behaviour is within their control and they can choose to stop.
- You cannot change the abuser. The abusive partner is the only person who can stop the violence and abuse.
- You don’t have to put up with it. Everyone has the right to safety and respect, to put themselves and the children first and to focus on their needs.
- You can increase your safety. If the abusive partner is intent on being violent or abusive, the victim will not be able to stop them. However, there are things they can do to increase their safety.
- Above all, be patient
You may also find these leaflets useful for safety planning