Why don't victims 'just leave'?
This is a question asked many times about those in abusive relationships. If it was that easy, of course a victim would leave.
An abuser will undermine and put their victim down, to ensure their victim thinks they cannot cope alone.
It can appear financially impossible to leave the situation, and alternatives are difficult for the victim and their children.
Why should they be the ones to leave their home, school and all that is familiar?
The victim may be constantly weighing up the challenges, benefits and risks of leaving.
The barriers to leaving can be overwhelming.
It takes a great deal of courage to leave someone who controls and intimidates you.
Often partners leave several times before making the final break. Women's Aid have information on their website about barriers to leaving an abusive relationship.
Statistically, women are at greatest risk of being murdered at the point of separation or after leaving a violent partner. Therefore, leaving without any support can be a very dangerous thing to do.
It is important that women plan their departure safely.