This NEW site aimes to tackle the issues of abuse and violence in teenage relationships....
Domestic abuse it not just an issue for adults, but also for teenagers. ChildLine receives around 3,000 contacts a year from young people about this issue.
"Teenage years are difficult at the best of times but a lack of experience in relationships and issues with self-confidence can mean young people feel they have nowhere to turn. Many victims, as well as perpetrators, come from abusive homes themselves and therefore don't realise how wrong these kind of relationships are.
"We strongly support these changes for young people who have suffered physical or emotional abuse and urge anyone in abusive relationships, male or female, to come forward and seek help. The NSPCC's young ambassadors are helping the Home Office to make sure these changes make a real difference for young people.
The new definition of domestic violence and abuse now states:
'Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. This can encompass, but is not limited to, the following types of abuse: psychological; physical; sexual; financial; emotional'.
Controlling behaviour is: a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.
Coercive behaviour is: an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim.
What is Domestic Abuse?
Cheshire Police defines domestic abuse as any threatening behaviour, violence or abuse - psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional - between adults who are or have been in a relationship, or who are members of the same family. This is regardless of gender, age or sexuality, and includes forced marriages and so-called honour-based violence.
Ask yourself the following questions -
You may be in an emotionally abusive relationship if your partner:
- Calls you names, insults you or continually criticises you.
- Doesn't trust you and continually acts in a jealous or possessive manner.
- Tries to isolate you from your family or friends.
- Monitors where you go, who you call and who you spend time with.
- Does not want you to work.
- Controls finances or refuses to share money.
- Punishes you by withholding affection.
- Expects you to ask permission.
- Threatens to hurt you, your children, your family or your pets.
- Humiliates you in any way.
You may be in a physically abusive relationship if your partner has ever:
- Damaged property when angry (thrown objects, punched walls, kicked doors, etc).
- Pushed, slapped, bitten, kicked or choked you.
- Abandoned you in a dangerous or unfamiliar place.
- Scared you by driving recklessly.
- Used a weapon to threaten or hurt you.
- Forced you to leave your home.
- Trapped you in your home or kept you from leaving.
- Prevented you from calling the police or seeking medical attention.
- Hurt your children.
- Used physical force in sexual situations.
You may be in a sexually abusive relationship if your partner:
- Accuses you of cheating or is often jealous of your outside relationships.
- Wants you to dress in a sexual way.
- Insults you in sexual ways or calls you sexual names.
- Has ever forced or manipulated you into to having sex or performing sexual acts.
- Has ever held you down during sex.
- Demands sex when you're sick, tired or after beating you.
- Hurts you with weapons or objects during sex.
- Involves other people in sexual activities with you.
- Ignores your feelings regarding sex.
If you answered yes to one or more of the above questions, this indicates that you may be experiencing domestic abuse. Although every situation is different there are common factors that link abusive relationships and acknowledging these factors is an important step.
National Domestic Violence Helpline
0808 2000 247
The freephone 24 Hour National Domestic Violence Helpline is run in partnership between Women’s Aid and Refuge. The helpline can give support, advice and information to women experiencing domestic violence and to family, friends colleagues and others calling on their behalf.