What is relationship abuse?

Relationship abuse can happen to anyone, anywhere at any time.

An abusive relationship isn’t just physical violence, it’s also when someone purposefully controls, manipulates or threatens another person. It could be something as ‘harmless’ as monitoring where you spend your money or your social media accounts.

Need someone to talk to or know someone who does?

If you are in immediate danger please call 999

Abuse doesn’t have a type

There are a lot of stereotypes and misconceptions about what abuse is and who it can affect.

The reality is that anyone can be affected no matter who they are, where they come from or what they do: neighbours, friends, family members, colleagues or you. The best thing you can do is understand the warning signs and learn what to do if you think you or a loved one could be in an abusive relationship. Learn more about the warning signs of relationship abuse below or get in touch now to see how we can help.
Know the signs

When it comes to understanding whether or not you or a friend are in an abusive relationship, always trust your gut. Chances are if it doesn’t feel right it probably isn’t. However, here are some of the common signs we recommend you look out for.
Does someone close to you:
  • Threaten or humiliate you, alone or in front of others?
  • Damage your belongings?
  • Control what you do?
  • Control who you talk to and what you do online?
  • Control how you spend or access money?
  • Follow or visit you without your permission?
  • Criticise you and constantly put you down?
  • Blame their culture, religion or personal problems as an excuse for their behaviour toward you?
  • Push, bully, slap, kick, punch or seriously hurt you?
  • Force you to have sex with them?
  • Force you to make decisions you don’t want to?
  • Make you fear your safety?
Does your friend or loved one fit any of these descriptions and they can’t seem to explain why?
  • Low self-esteem
  • Extremely apologetic
  • Agitated
  • Anxious
  • Developing a drug or alcohol problem
  • Low mood
  • Loss of interest in daily activities
  • Talking about or attempting suicide
  • ‘Walking on eggshells’ around their partner
  • Getting excessive calls or texts from their partner checking where they are
  • Have frequent bruises or injuries with a weak or inconsistent explanation, e.g. black eyes, broken bones, red marks on their neck, sprained wrists
“What if I’m responsible for these signs?"

If you think you may be responsible for making someone close to you feel this way, we can help you too. We have a specialist team that can support you to break the cycle of abusive behaviour, and learn to demonstrate love in a safe and healthy way. We’re not here to judge you, we’re here to help.

Our promises to you

We're always by your side

We’re always by your side

If you feel trapped and isolated by abusive behaviour, know that you don’t have to go through this alone. We’ll be here to support and walk alongside you when you need someone to be there. That’s a promise.

We're open to everyone

We’re open to everyone

Anyone can be affected by relationship abuse. That’s why we work with people from all walks of life, all genders and all ages. If we don’t have a programme that’s right for you, we’ll point you in the right direction to ensure you’re taken care of.

We’ll value your safety

We’ll value your safety

We understand that reaching for support isn’t easy. Our expertise and experience means we really do understand how important confidentiality and flexibility is for your safety. We’ll work with you to find a plan that prioritises that.

We’ll respect your choices

We’ll respect your choices

We’ll listen to what you want, and we won’t judge or force you into something that you don’t feel is right for you. No matter what you choose, we’ll make our support work for you.
Find out more about Glow

Imagine a world where no one has to live through an abusive relationship or feel trapped in the cycle of abusive behaviour. That world is possible, but it starts at the heart of the issue, working to end abuse at the source and bringing recovery, education and prevention together to make a lasting impact. 

Call us

If you live in North Staffordshire: 0330 0945 559 9am–5pm, Monday to Friday.

If you live in Derby or Derbyshire: 0133 2985 111 9am-8pm, Monday to Friday and 10am-4pm Saturday.

If you are in immediate danger please call 999

Trying to contact us after 5pm?

If we’re not available, we recommend you call:

Looking for a refuge?
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Click the ‘Exit Site’ button above to leave our site quickly at any time, or click the button below to learn how to increase your safety when visiting our site or contacting our team.