What is Domestic Abuse?

Domestic abuse means any incident of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 and over who are or have been intimate partners, or who are family members regardless of gender or sexuality.  It includes:

  • Physical abuse: pushing, hitting, punching, kicking, choking and using weapons
  • Sexual abuse: forcing or pressuring someone to have sex, unwanted sexual activity, touching, groping someone or making them watch pornography
  • Financial abuse: taking money, controlling finances, not letting someone work
  • Emotional abuse/coercive control: repeatedly making someone feel bad or scared, stalking, blackmailing, constantly checking up on someone, playing mind games. Coercive control is now a criminal offence under the Serious Crime Act 2015
  • Threats and intimidation: threatening to hurt or kill you, threatening to kill themselves, the children or family pets, destroying things that belong to you
  • Cyber/online abuse: using technology to further isolate, humiliate or control someone
  • Honour-based violence, forced marriage and female genital mutilation  

Domestic abuse can affect anyone, regardless of their gender, age, race, sexuality or social background. 

Victims often suffer in silence for many years and research shows that this is a significantly under-reported problem in our communities.

Abuse can take many forms and often has life changing consequences for those subject to the abuse. Research shows that one in four women and one in six men will suffer domestic abuse at some point in their lives.

Domestic abuse is a crime that can leave you feeling trapped and isolated.  It is never acceptable and is a crime that Gwent Police take very seriously.  We are here for you, however, if you’d rather not talk to the Police, there are other ways to get help.