Recognising Abuse

Three types of abuse:


This may include, but not limited to; hitting, kicking, domestic violence, restraint, burning, scalding, isolation, medication, force feeding/not feeding and any way that you may be physically harmed in.


This may include, but not limited to; threats of assault, humilation, intimidation, isolation, financial exploitation, manipulation, gaslighting, blaming, harrassment, or any way in which you may be psychologically harmed.


This may include, but not limited to; rape, indecent exposure, inappropriate looking, touching, sexual photography, forced witnessing of sexual act or pornography, or any other way where there is a lack of consent or ability to consent.

One of the most unspoken of topics in today’s modern society is abuse. In the UK, it is estimated that 7.9% of women (1.3 million) and 4.2% of men (695,000) have experienced domestic abuse in 2017-2018. 

Most people tend to think of a stereotypical image of abuse, where someone has been confined and physically abused. But this type of abuse, while one of the most damaging to the person and certainly does happen, is actually quite rare. Abuse can be quiet, stealthy, and sneaky, and most victims of abuse do not realise this before it is too late.

Signs of abuse

It's important to know the different signs that someone may be getting abused. Not all behaviours may be present, and some of them will be well hidden from the public.

For minors and vulnerable adults, the caregivers may display the following behaviours.

Most commonly, we are asked by victims of abuse whether their abuse is valid, as they do not feel like they have it was ‘that bad’ or whether it is because ‘they deserve it’. The answer to this, is that no matter what the intensity of the abuse is, if it is in one of the categories, it is classified as abuse.

Dangers of abuse:

Inevitably, when one talks about abuse, one also asks about what sort of damage the trauma has caused. These are some of the potential psychiatric conditions that it may cause.

Depression & Anxiety

Depression and anxiety are very common in survivors of abuse.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Flashbacks and nightmares after a traumatic event.

Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (CPTSD)

Complex PTSD which happens after trauma that is recurrent in nature.

Personality Disorders

Abuse can lead to difficulty maintaining relationships with people.

As seen by these psychiatric conditions, as well as physical scars in some cases, being abused is no joke. If you find yourself in a situation of abuse, you can follow these links to learn more about abuse: