Clouds dark as bruises

Hide behind a smiling mask

Chill rage of tyrants

Cherished illusions shattered

Silence mourns lost innocence


There are many forms of abuse within relationships. Not all of them leave bruises, but all of them leave scars. The less visible forms of abuse are often the ones that cut deepest and are the hardest to heal and their effects can be felt decades after the abuse has ended.

Many victims of abuse do not even realise that they are being abused, because the methods, including economic control, are insidious and do not always manifest as physical violence.

The welfare of children and pets can be used by abusers as weapons of coercion. Psychological abuse damages self confidence and can eradicate all sense of self worth. Social interaction can be restricted and controlled. Economic abuse effectively places victims in a position of dependence on their abuser and making it exceedingly difficult to leave.This can include holding the purse strings… or spending all the household income and expecting the victim to deal with the fallout. Victims may be forbidden the use of transport, have restricted access to food or be forced to go without necessities.

A draft bill just released in the UK has recognised the various methods of non-violent and economic control imposed upon partners in abusive relationships. It is a small step forward, but an important one, offering some protection to the victims.

Domestic abuse often goes unreported. Tragedies happen behind neighbours doors in households ruled by fear. Even when abuse is reported, it is not brought to justice as abusers have been able to coerce their victims to retract their statements.

It is not only women who are abused… many men suffer too, and for them it is even harder to escape, for our society expects them to be able to defend themselves and a man who cannot may be stigmatised as a weakling. Anyone who has suffered domestic abuse knows that it is never that simple…

Last year alone, in the UK, two million adults are known to have suffered domestic abuse. Of these, almost three quarters were women. On average, two women are killed every week in this country by their partners or ex-partners, who are almost always male.

There is help out there… and the law is beginning to recognise the need for change. In the UK, Refuge and Womens Aid are two of the many charities dedicated to ending abuse and helping victims become survivors. If you are a victim, or believe you may be a victim of abuse, open an in-private tab in your browser that will not show in your search history and visit their sites.

There is no shame in being a victim of abuse. It can happen to anyone… and the methods can be so vicious or so underhand that you are trapped before you realise. You don’t know where to begin… how to cope… where to go…

Becoming a survivor can happen to anyone too and you do not have to do it alone. Help is out there… you just have to ask.

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
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45 Responses to Stop…

  1. A very thoughtful post. And now, I’m thinking. That opened up a world of ideas …. not entirely pleasant ones. Life. Can’t live with it. Can’t live without it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sue Vincent says:

      Too many people still suffer domestic abuse… I don’t know what can be done to change us so that it doesn’t happen, but I do know that you can get help to walk away… and every positive change in the law is a step in the right direction.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. jenanita01 says:

    In subtle ways, I think some of us live with abuse, and put up with it out of loyalty or even love…
    Emotional blackmail, I think they call it…


  3. Adele Marie says:

    From a survivors point of view, great post, thank you, Sue. xxx


  4. Mick Canning says:

    The most we can do, most of us, is share awareness of the issue. The people who know least about it are usually the ones being abused. I’ve re-blogged this.


  5. Mick Canning says:

    Reblogged this on Mick Canning and commented:
    A useful and thoughtful post from Sue Vincent.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Such an informative, helpful post. As someone who worked in the field of family violence for two years, it’s so refreshing to see someone talk about the other forms of abuse (other than physical).

    I saw some of the worst abuse in forms other than physical; financial was a big one. As was the use of knowledge of the system. Too many times I’d try to hook a survivor into legal services only to find the other party had done something to make accessing a lawyer impossible (I won’t say how they did it in a public forum).

    We need to make more people aware of all types of abuse, and the best way is with posts like these. Well done Sue.


  7. V.M.Sang says:

    In one of the backstories for a character in My Wolves of Vimar Series, the character suffers from abuse. Not physical, (until the end) but controlling. As you say, this is the most insidious form of abuse and can go on quietly without anyone, sometimes not even the person being abused, noticing.


  8. Reblogged this on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog and commented:
    Sue discusses Abuse…

    Liked by 1 person

  9. A most excellent post, Sue. Many women are abused in some way at some point during their lives. I struggle to think of one woman I know who has suffered in some way in the hands of an abusive man.


  10. An important and sad post. Thanks, Sue


  11. willowdot21 says:

    A deep insightful post Sue. As you say mental abuse comes on slowly the abuser often makes themselves indispensable organising money, bills, shopping,cooking being so helpful that to the outside they look like saints. When things don’t go their way they change, in private. The abused will find themselves carrying all the blame, bullied, harranged hopeless. So hard to break the cycle. 💜💜


  12. Lucia says:

    Domestic violence a Very painful reality for many men and women. I don’t understand why the abusers “think’ they have the right to mistreat others, and why the abused allow to be abused.
    Great post, thank you for sharing, hopefully people takes conscious.


    • Sue Vincent says:

      Abusers are often very insecure about themselves and assert their authority over their victims to ‘prove’ they are superior…to themselves. Their victims allow it to happen because, at first, they cannot see or believe what is happening… they love and live in hope… and by the time they realise, it is often too late.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Lucia says:

    How sad. 😢


  14. An important topic, Sue, and I’m glad that the UK is heading in the right direction. Perhaps in a couple of years or so, the US will follow along.


  15. Jennie says:

    Important post, Sue.


  16. Pingback: Stop… — Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo – Domestic Violence Activism

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