If you are under 18 and are experiencing domestic abuse GDASS offers various programmes of support for you.
Domestic abuse could happen to anyone. It is never acceptable and is definitely not healthy. Abuse does not always mean being hit, it also includes sexual abuse and bullying.
If you are feeling intimidated by a partner (or ex-partner or family member), or they have made you feel frightened, then you may be experiencing domestic abuse.
Domestic abuse is not always carried out by a partner, it could be an ex-partner or a family member. It also includes forced marriage and female genital mutilation.
It can happen to people who identify as straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. Your sexuality does not make you more or less likely to experience domestic abuse.
This page will provide you with some information about domestic abuse and what to do if you, or someone you know, is experiencing it. It will offer you resources to help you to understand what is happening and guide you to useful websites and support.
If you have answered yes to any of these questions, you may be experiencing domestic abuse.
Firstly, you have done the right thing by looking for information about what is happening to you. A great first step. There is a wealth of support and information available to you.
Gloucestershire Domestic Abuse Support Service (GDASS) offers group work and one-to-one support for young people who are experiencing domestic abuse.
The GDASS floating support team will work with anyone aged 16 and over. Your support will be designed around what you are worried about and will fit in around school, college or work.
GDASS have a specialist Young Persons Violence Advocate (YPVA) who will work with those assessed as being at high risk of serious harm. She has specialist training to help you to stay safe.
Your friend may not be able to tell you that they are being abused. Here are some signs to look out for:
Bring up the subject
Ask them if they’re OK. Even if they don’t want to talk about it, they will know that you care about them
Offer support, not instructions
They are already experiencing control, be careful not to do the same. Let them know you are there for them whatever they decide to do.
Listen, Listen, Listen
Don’t judge them, it has taken a lot for them to talk to you. Listen to what they choose to tell you and offer them support as their friend.
Do not confront the abuser
This could make things worse for your friend and the abuser could try to isolate them more.
Help them to access support
There are services in place that can support your friend, you could help them to access them.
Useful phone numbers:
GDASS Young People’s Helpline: 01452 726 584
GDASS: 0845 602 9035
Gloucestershire Police Non-Emergency Number: 101
Gloucestershire Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre: 01452 536 770
Women’s Aid: 0808 2000 247
NSPCC: 0808 800 5000
NSPCC FGM helpline: 0800 028 3550
Karma Nirvana: Forced Marriage and HBV support: 0800 5999 247
Specialised Male Victims:
SurvivorsUK: txt helpline 020-3322-1860
Splitz Support Service – The Turnaround Programme is a voluntary group for male perpetrators of domestic abuse who wish to change their behaviour.