It takes strength to admit that you are abusing your partner. But if you really want to change, you can. Violence is learned behaviour. You can unlearn it – but you will only be successful if you can:
- Accept responsibility for the abuse. You cannot blame your actions on your partner, or on drink, drugs, stress or work
- Accept that the abuse comes from your desire to control your partner. Understand the ways you control that person and why you behave like this
- Realise that you have a choice. You choose to be violent or abusive, and you can choose not to be
- Accept that your partner has a right to live their own life without being dominated and controlled
- Stop using anger to control your partner
- Seek help from professionals. Start by talking to your GP who can refer you for counselling, or contact a local support group
Can anyone help me change?
Perpetrator programmes exist to help participants change their behaviour and increase the safety of their partners and children. Programmes normally consist of small groups of people from a range of backgrounds.
Group sessions look at the causes of violence and abuse, helping people understand why they are violent. Participants are asked to take full responsibility for the abuse and recognise the impact of their violence on their partners and children.
Participants also learn different, non-abusive ways of behaving within a relationship.
Most programmes are in contact with the person a perpetrator abused in order to ensure the ongoing safety of them and their children. Details of the Domestic Abuse Prevention Programmes.
Who to contact
Respect – the national association for domestic violence perpetrator programmes and associated support services – can help you find a programme. Visit the Respect website.