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  • Karen Hutchinson

Why victims don't leave

When an adult victim of family harm stays around, it’s possible they don’t see themselves as being a victim of harm. They may put the behaviour of the person using abuse down to other reasons like having a bad day or being grumpy because they lost something.

Victims usually have many strategies for keeping themselves as safe as possible and it can be difficult to stand back and see what is happening across time and the way the harm is impacting them or their children.

Adult victims will try to convince the person using abuse to cut it out by explaining the harm hurts or by trying to always please the person using abuse. This pattern can put the victim in the position of taking responsibly for the abuse and if only they could unlock the code, the abuse would stop. This never happens as the only way for abuse to stop is for the abuser to stop doing it and that’s not something a victim can have much influence over.

If this sounds like something you have experienced, either as an abuser or a victim, talk to us for support.

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