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Support with abuse

Shout 85258 free text support service is there for moments when you are dealing with abuse and need support to get to a calmer place.

If your life is at imminent risk, please call 999 immediately.

What is abuse?

There is no one definition of abuse, though we see abuse as a situation where a vulnerable person is being harmed by another.

Abuse comes in many forms, including:

  • Physical abuse - an intentional/reckless and unwanted use of physical force to intimidate or assault, and that is not of a sexual nature
  • Emotional abuse - being made to feel intimidated or scared. Being called names, being put down and having your confidence and self-esteem lowered. Being made to feel guilty or undermined (otherwise known as gaslighting). Having money withheld from you so you have no control, or being humiliated
  • Financial abuse - when someone controls your ability to acquire, use and maintain financial resources
  • Sexual abuse - being forced to take part in a sexual act
  • Neglect - not looking after you properly or keeping you healthy

If you’re experiencing abuse, you might not always use this word to describe your situation, but it’s important to know that the pain you are experiencing is real and that there is support available to you.

No one should deal with abuse alone. If you are looking for support, you can text SHOUT to 85258 to speak to one of our volunteers. It is free, anonymous, confidential and won’t appear on your phone bill.

How can I help someone who is being abused?

If you know someone who is being abused, it can be really hard to help them, particularly if they don’t recognise that they are being abused.

It’s important to let them know that you are there for them, listen and support them and encourage them to seek professional help.