Trigger warning: The following visual poem illustrates the harm caused by psychological and emotional abuse.
Despite how common psychological and emotional abuse is in relationships, it can sometimes be hard to pin down or to explain to others, and even harder to protect yourself from. It is important to know that the law’s definition of domestic violence includes psychological and emotional abuse. Women’s Refuge has a very useful description of the forms that psychological abuse can take. Shakti also has a very comprehensive resource at page 5 of this booklet on how psychological abuse may manifest in migrant communities.
There are things that you can do to protect yourself from psychological and emotional abuse, including applying for a protection order from the court. If you want to discuss your options, including applying for a protection order, Community Law may be able help. As well as general legal advice sessions, we also offer women’s only and family sessions. You’ll be able to see a lawyer privately and confidentially, and it’s completely free. Our sessions are family friendly – we have toys, tea and coffee, and volunteers to help entertain the kids so you can see a lawyer alone. Please come and see us if you have any concerns.
Other useful links include:
Types of Abuse – Women’s Refuge
Personal stories of domestic violence – Are You OK?
Community Law Manual – Domestic Violence Chapter