Recognizing the subtle signs of domestic violence

On Behalf of | May 19, 2024 | Domestic Violence |

Domestic violence is one of the top reasons for families breaking up, causing immense emotional and psychological trauma. While physical assault is the most clearly defined form of domestic violence, it’s essential to acknowledge that abuse can also take on subtler forms.

Understanding the subtle forms of domestic violence and how to identify them is crucial for providing support to those who may be experiencing abuse, as it enables early intervention and can potentially save lives.

What are the subtle signs of domestic violence?

Some of the signs that you or a loved one may be experiencing domestic violence include:

  • Gaslighting: If your partner constantly manipulates your perception of reality, making you doubt your memory, perception or sanity, it could be a sign of domestic violence. This often involves them denying things they’ve said or done, shifting blame onto you or making you feel like you’re overreacting or imagining things.
  • Financial control: Another sign of subtle domestic violence is when your partner exerts control over finances, such as restricting access to money, monitoring your spending or preventing you from working or having financial independence. This can leave you feeling trapped or dependent on your partner and is often a tactic used to maintain power and control within the relationship.
  • Isolation: Your partner may also attempt to isolate you from friends, family or support networks, either subtly or overtly. This could involve discouraging you from spending time with loved ones, controlling who you can see or talk to or making you feel guilty or ashamed for wanting to socialize outside of the relationship.
  • Coercive control: You might realize that your partner is exerting coercive control if they use a range of tactics to dominate and manipulate you, such as monitoring your movements, imposing strict rules and regulations or making threats to harm you or your loved ones if you don’t comply with their demands.

If you are a victim of subtle domestic violence, consider seeking support and legal guidance to better understand your rights, options and avenues for protection.