This isn’t love – love shouldn’t hurt

9th February 2021

This isn’t love – love shouldn’t hurt Image

 

This isn’t love – love shouldn’t hurt

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Sandwell Council’s Domestic Abuse team want to raise awareness of abusive relationships and let victims know there’s help available.

Domestic abuse isn’t always physical. Coercive control is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten victims. Many abusive relationships are a pattern of physical, emotional, sexual and verbal abuse that escalate over time – often without people even realising. Victims can often be ashamed or embarrassed to seek help – or have been made to believe by perpetrators that the abuse is their fault. However, there’s no excuse for domestic abuse. Victims are not to blame and support is available.

The Domestic Abuse team would like to share, Tina’s Story at www.sandwell.gov.uk/tinasstory to help other families. Tina was murdered by her partner in 2017.  Her partner had subjected her to years of abuse and controlling behaviour. He was jailed for life with a minimum of 24 years for her murder.

How do you know if this is happening to you?

Some common examples of coercive behaviour are:

  • Isolating you from friends and family
  • Depriving you of basic needs, such as food
  • Monitoring your time
  • Monitoring you via online communication tools or spyware
  • Taking control over aspects of your everyday life, such as where you can go, who you can see, what you can wear and when you can sleep
  • Depriving you access to support services, such as medical services
  • Repeatedly putting you down, such as saying you’re worthless
  • Humiliating, degrading or dehumanising you
  • Controlling your finances
  • Making threats or intimidating you.

Councillor Farut Shaeen, cabinet member for living healthy lives said: “At this difficult time it is important that everyone knows that there is a huge amount of support available to those who find themselves victims of domestic abuse.

“Domestic Abuse is never acceptable in any circumstance but it is perhaps even more terrifying for victims when they are living in such close proximity to the perpetrators. Please be assured that victims of Domestic Abuse are an absolute priority for the police and support agencies.”

Sandwell Council Deputy Leader Councillor Maria Crompton added: “For most people, Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate their relationships and the love they share with their partner. However, for many it is just another day of living in fear of abuse. Love and relationships should be based on equality and respect, not violence and abuse.

“We are only too aware that not every home is a safe one and, during this lockdown period, there is a heightened risk of domestic abuse. If anyone is experiencing domestic violence or is at risk then help is here. Sandwell Council is continuing to provide critical services to our residents when they need them most – all you need to do is call us.”

 

Picture – This Isn’t Love

Published: 9th February 2021