If you are a regular listener to Radio 4's’s long running soap, The Archers
, you’ll know that a current story line deals with the issue of domestic abuse within the Titchener family. Rob Titchener is not physically violent to his pregnant wife, Helen; his abusive behaviour involves controlling her movements, isolating her from her family and friends, controlling what she wears, what she can, undermining her by stating, or implying, that she is too weak, too fragile, or to foolish to make her own decisions.
In real life, as in the Archers, Abuse takes many forms and doesn't’t always involve physical violence. Abusers are often extremely manipulative and will present their abuse or controlling behaviour as concern or even love. Many abusers will also work to undermine the self-confidence of their victims, and seek to blame the victim, to convince them that the abusive behaviour is because of something which the victim has done. (for instance, by claiming that the victim has ‘made’ them angry, or jealous) or that their controlling or abusive behaviour is ‘necessary’ (for example, claiming that they need to manage all of the finances in the relationship, because the victim ‘doesn’t understand’ or ‘can’t manage’)
If you experience this kind of behaviour, it can sometimes be hard to recognise that it has become abusive, as it can often build up gradually over a period of time.
If you, or someone you know, is a victim of domestic abuse, you can get practical and legal help. There are a number of charities which deal specifically with supporting victims of domestic violence and abuse, including Refuge
, Women’s Aid
and the ManKind Initiative.
In addition, specially trained Police Domestic Violence Liaison Officers can provide help in dealing with the police and referring you for further assistance.
Solicitors such as FDC Law can provide you with advice about your situation, including helping you to find out whether you will be eligible for legal aid to cover your legal costs, giving you advice about how you can safely end an abusive relationship, how to protect yourself (and your children, if appropriate) and to help with a divorce and sorting out financial issues.
The Archers storyline involves a relationship where the husband is abusing his wife, however, domestic abuse doesn’t only affect women; it can happen to men, and within same-sex relationships as well as heterosexual ones.
If you need further information or advice, contact Marjorie Taylor
or Marion Fisher
for a free initial consultation, and we can provide the information you need, to allow you to decide what you next step should be. Don’t suffer in silence.