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Remember The Vulnerable

I have just seen that both Childline and Barnados are urging people to remember the children in our society who are living in families where there may be parental domestic violence and abuse of some description. Children living in families such as these will have a very different childhood experience to most of us and now families are being asked to spend inordinate amounts of time together, they become even more at risk of emotional damage.

For those children who don’t have to contend with these issues, home is usually their ‘secure base’, the place where they can feel safe and nurtured with no additional responsibilities. Sadly when domestic abuse is present, a child’s home isn’t the environment where they feel secure, school is more likely to be the place where they feel there is no risk to their safety. Currently attending school is not an option available to the vast majority of children and the need to be at home can put families who are struggling, under even more pressure than usual.

Unfortunately figures are already showing that since March 23rd there have been at least 10 deaths as a result of domestic violence. Financial difficulties, being asked to work from home and pressures of family life in a confined space, may well be impacting on stress levels For perpetrators being asked to manage additional stress can have a really negative effect on their behaviour, possibly leading to increased aggression towards other family members. Part of the advice usually offered by DV agencies and professionals is to safely separate from the perpetrator, ideally with the offender leaving the family home, but where can they go? If the target of the violence and any children try to leave they will also struggle to find a place of safety.                        

So whilst well respected charities are asking for monetary support at this difficult time so that they can offer very necessary support to those who ask for it, this continues to be an extremely difficult and potentially dangerous time for those who are living in a volatile, unpredictable situation and whilst parents will be doing their best to protect their children from an abusive partner or from the effects of having to witness abuse, they are now seriously restricted in how they might do that.

If you are currently experiencing abuse from a partner and would like some legal support please contact Brethertons for advice on or contact the family team directly.