We have outlined definitions of these key words to help understand what the terms mean.  These are for guidance and will not cover every possible behaviour.  If you don't feel that what you experienced is captured, don't worry. If you experienced or witnessed something that made you feel uncomfortable, or scared, that is valid.  


Domestic Abuse is defined as any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. This  includes,  psychological, physical, sexual, financial and/or emotional abuse.  There may be a pattern of one or a few of these behaviours and includes, being hit, verbally abused, threats or being isolated from friends. You do not have to be living with the person for this definition to apply to their behaviour.

‘Controlling or Coercive behaviour’
describes behaviour happening within a current or former intimate or family relationship which causes someone to fear that violence will be used against them on more than one occasion, or causes serious alarm or distress that substantially affects their day to day activities. It involves a pattern of behaviour or incidents that enable a person to exert power or control over another. These acts are designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependant by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour. It may include an act or a pattern of acts of assaults, threats, humiliation and intimidation, telling you what to do, say or wear and tracking where you go and who you see and demanding passwords for your accounts including banking and university IT account.

is the action of indirectly interfering with the decision-making process of another person, particularly in a clever or unscrupulous way. It may be emotional or psychological.  Manipulative behaviours include threatening you, flattering you, making you feel guilty, or putting you down and making you feel low self worth. Some manipulators display confusing behaviour by alternating between being overly affectionate and charming and then being cold or angry.   They may also use emotional blackmail or threats of what might happen if end the relationship.

Stalking is a pattern of repeated and unwanted behaviour that is used by a person to affect their victim. Every stalking situation is different.  It may include;  unwanted attention, contact, harassment, leaving frequent messages, unwanted gifts, turning up at places you are at and monitoring where you are and who you are with.   Stalking behaviours may be committed in person or by monitoring and harassing the victim electronically.

Honour-Based Violence is a crime or incident committed to protect or defend the honour of the family or community. The term can cover a collection of practices used to control behaviour within families or other social groups, in order to protect perceived cultural and religious beliefs or honour. You may be told that you have brought shame on your family because of your choice of partner, the clothes you wear or something that has happened to you.

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There are two ways you can tell us what happened