Helping victims/survivors

Do you wonder: “Is he doing this to me on purpose? And if he is knowingly being cruel, neglectful and controlling, then I find that too hard to take, that he would be so calculated in his nastiness to me. I’ve not done anything to create that.” Do you wish: “I’d rather he did not know what [...]

Most women who come to me for counselling are often confused and exasperated by their male partner’s flip flopping between ‘good guy’ and ‘bad guy’. Pauline said her husband Chris, “would be so lovely and charming to other people and so shit horrible to me.” Peter, a man who’d attended a stopping violence programme told [...]

Are you a despairing mother whose daughter is in an abusive relationship and you’re at your wits end trying to work out how best to support her? Have you opened your home time and time again, then your daughter comes home and you and your family try and help her through the drama she’s having [...]

This is the sixteenth of 16 blogs discussing the patterns of tactics from my power and control wheel — Physical Violence. This blog focuses on men’s motivations for using coercively controlling physical violence against female partners. A man interviewed by Jeff Hearn(12) said: “I don’t let it lie, because I always want to have the [...]

This is the fourteenth of 16 blogs discussing the patterns of tactics from my power and control wheel — Symbolic Aggression. A symbolic act is a verbal or physical gesture that represents or means something of larger significance than the gesture itself. Symbolic aggression includes verbal or physical gestures aimed at terrorising, threatening, intimidating, dominating, [...]

This is the seventh of 16 blogs discussing the patterns of tactics from my power and control wheel – Degradation & Suppression of Potential. Men who degrade their female partner do this by calling her derogatory names like slut or whore, using abusive language, correcting things the woman says or does, by depriving her of [...]

This is the sixth of 16 blogs discussing the patterns of tactics from my power and control wheel – Emotional unkindness & violation of trust. What is emotional unkindness? Emotional unkindness entails DOING something unkind and the ABSENCE of, or FAILURE to do something kind. Emotional unkindness is a failure to provide for emotional needs [...]

I wrote a blog post Warning Signs of Coercive Control by Your Partner for the Home & Family Counselling organisation’s Blog to give women some pointers about warning signs of coercive control by a male partner. Clues to warning signs that you’re in a relationship that is highly likely to continue to get worse – [...]

Why women and society miss the cues of psychological abuse and coercive control What have I done wrong? Am I going crazy? Is this normal? One of the most common problems for women experiencing psychological abuse, is that they do not realise what is occurring in the early stages and are often not able to [...]

In the family violence scenario threats of suicide are manipulative and can lead to killing others. Threats of suicide by a man with a history of psychologically controlling his partner can be an indicator that he could seriously harm or murder family members, often before killing himself. Such threats make it vital for wider family and [...]

I’ve known many women who, after leaving a controlling male partner, experienced ongoing anger that just would not go away. Some women have incessant thoughts of revenge and fight with themselves not to do something they’ll regret. I’m writing this blog in response to a comment posted by Amy in my blog post about how [...]

You’re dating or living with this good looking guy, maybe he’s charming and you feel wanted . . . but things he says or does make you feel bad about yourself – and you can’t really figure out why. You likely question yourself asking whether it’s something about you – because he doesn’t seem to [...]

Women who have male partners who psychologically abuse, restrict, control, manipulate and rob women of their sense of self, need a safety plan whether their partner ever lays a finger on them or not. Many controlling men stalk, threaten and harass women who leave. Other controlling men use physical violence, or threaten to kill, or [...]

Men who murder their female partners are often motivated by a need to save face by regaining a sense of power and control if the woman threatens to leave, or does leave. Many mental health and legal professionals do not take women’s experience of psychological abuse and control seriously. But men’s perpetration of psychological abuse [...]

Dr Angela Jury conducted interviews with 25 survivors of intimate partner abuse for her PhD research. The following are extracts from a Massey University news release about her study: Abused women – especially victims of psychological and emotional torment – are often so paralysed by what they see as the stigma and shame associated with [...]

Women I interviewed for my Masters research said that before marrying, most of them had total belief in their partner – because he was a man. The women said that trusting and believing their partner – just because he was a man – was socially encouraged. In other words when he used abusive language, or [...]

Some male perpetrators of domestic violence harm family pets to get power and control over their wives and children. Men’s cruelty to companion animals silences women and children and is used to gain compliance, instill fear and prevents women from leaving and abusive relationship

Maintenance is the fifth and final stage in this series of blogs about providing help for women that is appropriate to her stage of coping with being abused and controlled by a male partner. Dienneman and her colleagues (2007) call this stage establishing a new life whether the woman stays together with her partner or [...]

Stage 4 of making change is the time when new actions take place. Dienemann and colleagues (2007) suggest this stage in women’s relationships in which men abuse and control them, entails breaking away from their relationship – or – it entails the man curtailing his abuse and control. This is a time when women assess [...]

When women start to develop a determination to prepare for seeking change it does not mean it becomes easy for friends and family to know how to support her. At this third stage in women’s process of making sense of one-sided power and control by a male partner, Dienemann and colleagues (2007) suggest women are [...]

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