How to Spot the more Subtle Signs of Domestic Abuse

My content is always very much centred around championing women, female empowerment and sharing advice and so today I want to help you spot some signs that you could be in an abusive relationship.

I think we’re all pretty clued up on the usual signs of domestic abuse: violence, fits of rage that lead to physical harm and the tell-tale symptom of bruised skin. But I don’t think we are aware of the more subtle signs of controlling, abusive relationships.

Some signs of coercive controlling behaviour can be hard to recognise and whilst they might seemingly first appear as caring or loving, but in actual fact can be incredibly controlling.

It’s so important, now more than ever given the huge rise in calls for help in lockdown, that we clue ourselves up on the signs to look out for.

12 signs to look out for:

  1. Is your partner extremely jealous, to the point of controlling aspects of your life?
  2. Does your partner’s personality switch between charming to abusive.
  3. Do you feel like you’re being isolated from your friends or family?
  4. Do you find yourself walking on eggshells to avoid upsetting your partner
  5. Do they tell you that you’re useless or couldn’t cope without them?
  6. Do they pressure you into sex or intimacy when you don’t want to?
  7. Do they monitor your movement? Check up on your email, texts and social media?
  8. Have they ever threatened or intimidated you by using violent language or smashing furniture?
  9. Have they ever said you deserve the abuse?
  10. Have they tried to control your finances? This could be a sign that they are trying to take away your financial independence so you can’t leave the relationship.
  11. Are they constantly criticising you or putting you down in public?
  12. Do they tell you what to wear, who to see, where to go and what to think?

If any of these sound familiar, please talk to someone and share what you’ve been going through. You can also take a look at domestic abuse charity Refuge’s website for plenty more information and a number to reach out to for help or advice.

This is unacceptable behaviour and you deserve so much better.

Alongside this video I have filmed a very short IGTV on the subject so please give it a watch and share this with your friends. This is so important.


In England and Wales alone, two women die at the hands of an ex or current partner every week.

One in four women will experience domestic abuse at some point in their lives.

It doesn’t matter if your partner has had a bad day, had too much to drink or if his team have lost, there is no excuse for domestic abuse, ever.

Lots of love,


Pictures by Sarah-Ellen Photography

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Looking for Something?