Is this love?

Is it love? Or is it domestic abuse? Know the signs and, if you need to, reach out for help.

  • Posted Tue, Dec 15, 2020 11:40 AM

The signs of domestic abuse may not be as clear as you'd think. Abuse can be about controlling someone's mind and emotions, as much as hurting their body.

The following signs could mean that your relationship, or a relationship around you, is unhealthy. Look for signs of:

  • Bullying, threatening or controlling behaviour
  • Control of money
  • Cutting off from family and friends
  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse

Is it love? Or is it domestic abuse? Know the signs and, if you need to, reach out for help.


 Is your relationship healthy?

The signs of domestic abuse are not as clear as you'd think, and range from emotional, psychological and financial abuse to sexual and physical abuse.

Find out if your relationship is healthy by taking our short, online quiz at

It might be love. It might be domestic abuse.

 This time of the year can be stressful, especially if you're living with domestic abuse and with the added pressures of coronavirus.

In an emergency situation always call 999 for help.

If you are safe, but need to report a crime such as criminal damage, physical violence or sexual violence, call the Police on 101.

If you are experiencing domestic abuse and need support, please get in touch with the @Stop Domestic Abuse service <tag them if using on social>, our domestic abuse team, for advice and support on 023 9206 549 or by email on Our experienced specialist team is on hand to discuss your concerns and needs, 9am – 9pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 6pm weekends and bank holidays. Contact can be by phone or face-to-face in a safe location.

Find out more at

Domestic violence and abuse is a pattern of behaviour designed to achieve power and control over a partner, ex-partner or family member, regardless of gender or sexuality.

This is achieved through the use of physical, sexual, psychological and financial abuse or through movement restriction and/or social isolation e.g. stopping you from seeing your family and or friends.

It might be love, it might be abuse - and the signs may not be as clear as you’d think. Learn more about the signs that your relationship, or a relationship around you, might be unhealthy by taking our online quiz at

If you think a friend, family member or colleague is in an abusive relationship, try telling them that you’re concerned, say why you’re worried and ask if they want to talk to you about it. Let them know you want to help.

Follow our steps to support them:

  • Always prioritise safety - yours and theirs
  • Support them in whatever decision they are currently making, while being clear that abuse of any kind is wrong
  • Focus on their safety rather than the abuser or the relationship
  • Reassure them that the abuse is not their fault
  • Remind them of their strengths and praise them for every step they take
  • Stay in contact to explore what the options are


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