Victims First, which supports victims of crime and abuse across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire, has launched a video to raise awareness of coercive control and emotional abuse in relationships.
The video, ‘Don’t Disappear’ can be viewed here.
It highlights the red flags to look out for in a relationship, which can be the warning signs of controlling behaviour and abuse.
Coercive control became a criminal offence in 2015 and involves an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse by a perpetrator that is used to harm, punish or frighten their victim.
Although many people associate domestic abuse with physical violence, coercive control recognises the damaging impact of other forms of abuse in relationships as well.
‘Don’t Disappear’ follows the story of Jamie and Emma, from the seemingly loving early stages of their relationship, to the development of abusive behaviour.
Although anyone can be a victim of coercive control, ‘Don’t Disappear’ is particularly aimed at younger people who may have less experience of relationships or people who are at the beginning of a relationship, to raise awareness of the red flags which at the time, may be missed or misinterpreted as acceptable behaviour.
The video covers a range of controlling behaviours exhibited from Jamie to Emma including:
* Jealousy and possessiveness including accusations of flirting and cheating
* Isolating her from her family and friends
* Controlling the use of her phone and social media
* Constantly checking on her whereabouts
* Sudden outbursts of anger and mood changes, and
* Love bombing – showering her with excessive affection and attention in order to retain control
Both men and women can be victims or perpetrators of coercive control which can take place in heterosexual and same-sex relationships.
Other examples of coercive control include, depriving someone of basic needs, monitoring their time and activities, taking control over aspects of their everyday life such as where they can go or who they can see, humiliating, degrading or dehumanising someone, controlling their finances and making threats or intimidating behaviour.
You can view Don’t Disappear at https://youtu.be/d6rt8w5HBWw
Victims First is managed by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Thames Valley and provides support to anyone impacted by any type of crime or abusive.
If you have been affected by coercive control or domestic abuse you can access support through Victims First on 0300 1234 148 or online at www.victims-first.org.uk.