If you need help or information please contact us on 01224 593381

Hide this site Cover your tracks

Understanding domestic abuse: 20 common myths

30 Jul 2018 Article Image

There are many myths surrounding domestic abuse, but we’ve challenged the most common ones below.


Myth #1

It only happens to poor women in rundown areas

The Truth is.....

Domestic abuse happens to women of all ages and ethnicities and from all walks of life


Myth #2

Alcohol and drugs are causes of domestic abuse

The Truth Is.....

Perpetrators are the cause of domestic abuse; drugs and alcohol cannot be used to deny responsibility


Myth #3

Some women deserve it

The Truth Is.....

No-one deserves to be abused, no matter how they may have behaved


Myth #4

If it was that bad, women would just leave

The Truth Is.....

There are many reasons why women don’t leave including fear, shame, guilt, hope and love


Myth #5

She must have provoked him

The Truth Is.....

It’s important to remember that the perpetrator is ALWAYS responsible for the abuse


Myth #6

If it’s not physical, it’s not domestic abuse

The Truth Is.....

Domestic abuse can be verbal, emotional, controlling, coercive, degrading, psychological, financial and sexual, as well as violent


Myth #7

What goes on behind closed doors should stay there

The Truth Is.....

Domestic abuse is a criminal act and people must speak out for it to stop


Myth #8

It must have just been a ‘domestic’, every couple argues

The Truth Is.....

It is never okay for an argument to escalate to violence or emotional abuse


Myth #9

Just as many men experience domestic abuse

The Truth Is.....

Domestic abuse is a gendered crime. Statistically, more cases of domestic abuse are experienced by women and committed by men


Myth #10

Perpetrators are always nasty, violent men who are easy to spot

The Truth Is.....

Most perpetrators live a seemingly normal life and are skilled at hiding their behaviour from those on the outside including friends, family and work colleagues


Myth #11

Just because he abuses his partner doesn’t mean he’s a bad father

The Truth Is.....

Children who witness or experience domestic abuse can be traumatised long-term and are also victims of child abuse


Myth #12

She didn’t tell anyone when it started so she must be lying

The Truth Is.....

Many women hide the truth as they feel scared and ashamed or believe they are to blame


Myth #13

People who experience domestic abuse are sometimes to blame

The Truth Is.....

Survivors of domestic abuse are never to blame, the perpetrator must always be held responsible


Myth #14

Children sometimes cause domestic abuse to happen

The Truth Is.....

Children have no control over an abusive parent and it is never their fault


Myth #15

Children who live with domestic abuse grow up to be victims or abusers

The Truth Is.....          

Growing up in an abusive home can be a risk factor but many of these children grow up to be repelled by violence as they have seen first-hand how traumatic it can be. Childhood experiences cannot be used as excuses by perpetrators


Myth #16           

Adults can hide domestic abuse from children

The Truth Is.....                

Even if a child doesn’t see violence or abuse, they can still hear shouting and notice an upset parent or physical injuries. Children and young people will experience domestic abuse


Myth #17            

Domestic abuse is just a temporary loss of temper

The Truth Is.....                   

Domestic abuse is not related to anger management or temper, it is about sustained control


Myth #18            

Domestic abuse happens more in some cultures and communities than others

The Truth Is.....                   

Domestic abuse can happen to anyone regardless of race, religion, education or how much money you have


Myth #19            

Domestic abuse increases during the World Cup

The Truth Is.....                   

Domestic abuse happens all year round and will continue to happen regardless of football scores. Whilst police may see an increase in reports of physical violence, it’s important to remember that domestic abuse is an ongoing pattern of controlling behaviour.


Myth #20           

Perpetrators must be mentally ill

The Truth Is.....                 

Research has shown that the proportion of those with a mental illness is no higher than society as a whole


If you are experiencing domestic abuse, please call us on 01224 593381, or email info@grampian-womens-aid.com, for free, confidential advice