Coercive control and domestic violence
What is it? Coercive control is a sustained campaign of psychological terrorism which is the lifeblood of domestic violence. Domestic violence is not a one-off act – it is a series of destructive acts designed to break down the victim’s confidence and will. Coercive Control” is used to instil fear and compliance in a partner and consists of behaviours such as:
• excessive monitoring of the other partner in the relationship
• constant interrogations as to where you've been and who you've seen that day
• excessive jealousy and possessiveness
• wanting to move very quickly in the relationship i.e. moving in together early in the relationship
• exclusive partnership early in the relationship
• obsessive monitoring e.g. reading texts and emails
• tell what clothes can and cannot be worn
• isolating from family and friends
• controlling bank account so the person can’t afford to leave.
Deb Thomson’s book “Whose Life is it Anyway?” provides examples of these behaviours. Deb says:
Perhaps if I'd known about Coercive Control at that time I would have left him early into the partnership. To this end, I have written my book to hopefully help readers to recognise possible or potential abuse in their own relationships and leave before trauma from abuse becomes so entrenched it takes years to recover from."