Domestic Abuse

Living in a home with domestic violence creates long term problems for all. Its not always as obvious as physical acts of violence; there are other more subtle ways to control and terrorise.

This article about two Brothers whose Father murdered their Mother and Sister describes their experience. What strikes me is that as is often the case the article quotes a neighbour describing the murderer as “a nice guy”. When I  read about these cases I nearly always find quotes like this, as though their behaviour is so out of character.

Whether it is a case that has ended in murder or not, so many people want to make excuses for the abuser. This article on Johnny Depp highlights the issues, too often the victim is blamed. Either they are not believed at all or they are deemed as responsible for “provoking” the abuser. Outsiders who haven’t lived in the home feel they have a right to comment in defence.

The reality is domestic abusers are often skilled manipulators. Friends and acquaintances are also being manipulated by them. Its often only those closest to them who may know the real people.

Therefore, don’t be fooled by a stereotype of what you think an abuser looks like. They aren’t all addicts and out of control people brawling in the street. They can be anyone, at any level of society. From the person serving you coffee to the bank manager, to your next door neighbour… to your friend…. to your family. And they won’t always be men either.