Facing up to it
Many people excuse their behaviour by minimising what they are doing - 'it's not that bad', blaming their partner - 'she wound me up', saying it's because of other pressures such as work or by blaming drinking too much, or momentary loss of control.
This can make you feel better in the short term. However, in the long term, your behaviour is putting your relationship, your partner's health and your children's future at risk.
Facing up to this and taking responsibility for your behaviour is a major step towards changing your behaviour.
What can I do about it?
To start try reading through the Loving without Abuse document - it gives tips on recognising warning signs and how to try to stop violent behaviour.
In North Yorkshire there is a project called Making Safe that works with people who are abusive and can find them accommodation and support. For more information about Making Safe either call our helpline - 03000 110 110 - or phone 01723 365609.
You could also ring Respect on 0808 802 4040 - they are a specialist organisation that helps people who are violent or abusive.
Many people who abuse find that a 'Perpetrators Programme' can help them change their behaviour. There are different ways of accessing a programme.
Some men access programmes on a voluntary basis and some are mandated to attend by a court as part of a probation order.
All programmes have some similarities in that they are group sessions run over several months by highly trained people and they look at:
- What abuse is,
- Understanding why you're violent,
- Taking responsibility for your behaviour,
- Understanding the impact of violence and abuse,
- Learning how to notice when you're becoming abusive and how to stop,
- Learning different, non-abusive ways of dealing with difficulties in your relationship,
- Recognising how you get wound up and learning how to wind yourself down,
- Looking at building successful relationships.