Coercive control

Coercive control is an act or patterns of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim.

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What is coercive control

Coercive control is a pattern of controlling behaviours that give perpetrators power over their victim. making it difficult for them to leave. Coercive control is a form of emotional abuse that can cause psychological trauma.

Coercive control might include:

  • financial control of a victim’s money
  • controlling the victim to get them to reduce or eliminate contact with friends and family
  • Prevent the victim from going to work
  • Insulting the victim
  • Threats of public humiliation
  • Threating self-harm
  • Manipulation
  • Threating children or pets

The perpetrator creates a world in which the victim is monitored and criticised. The victim’s every move is checked against an unpredictable, ever-changing, unknowable ‘rule-book’ Coercive control also includes gaslighting (a form of psychological abuse in which a victim is manipulated into doubting their own memory and sanity).

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