Physical abuse is often the last type of abuse to appear in a relationship. Controlling behaviour, emotional and psychological abuse, eventually escalates to physical assault. The risk to safety of course increases with the use of physical violence, At its most serious physical abuse leads to death, and two women every week are killed by their current or former partner.
It can include:
- Pushing or pulling
- Slapping or hitting
- Pinching, scratching and biting
- Cutting or using sharp objects
- Kicking and kneeing
- Sleep deprivation
- Starving or refusing water
- Drugging or refusing essential medicines
- Choking, suffocating or strangling
- Scalding, burning or setting alight
- Using objects to hurt by striking or throwing
- Using weapons
- Attempted murder
If you are living with physical abuse, you are living with the worry that your partner could hurt you at any time. The shock and pain when it happens will gradually give way to the fear that it will happen again. Violence in relationships tends to get more severe over time and to happen more often. For women, during pregnancy and after the birth of a baby are particular risk times for violence, when abusive partners feel jealous or that they are losing control. Physical abuse may also increase when a person tries to end an abusive relationship.
If you are suffering physical abuse, please ring our Helpline on 0800 4701 505. In an emergency ring 999.