Fully Human is a private psychotherapy practice. It is not an emergency service and it does not provide around-the-clock urgent or crisis help.
If you are in some kind of trouble, if you are contemplating taking your own life or someone else’s, if you are under threat, are a victim of abuse, violence or coercive control and do not feel safe where you are or if you just need to talk to someone, there are services that can help you.
Updated on 28/3/2020
Coercive Control & Child Abuse — Our government has enacted the current UK-wide lockdown and extreme isolation measures, which trap people at home indefinitely without sufficient consideration that families are not always safe for women or children or for other vulnerable people. Although it is well known that the bulk of abuse of women and of children is perpetrated by someone they know, fear of the virus has been prioritised over other forms of safety.
Therefore at this time when we are in enforced isolation it is particularly important to protect yourself and others from coercive control and to protect children from sexual and other forms of abuse within their families. Do not hold back, do not put up with it and please be sure to report if you know or suspect something, and if you are the victim, if you are able to.
Victims, especially children and young people, depend on others noticing and reporting because they often do not report what is being done to them. They don’t have the strength and are often too confused and frightened to reach out and tell what is being done to them. Perpetrators often threaten victimes that if they do tell the perpetrator would harm them more or would harm someone else they care about. Victims might feel loyalty to the perpetrator if it is a close member of the family or a parent.
Victims are often made to feel that they are bad or disloyal if they ‘tell on’ someone close. Many families are not safe enough and when a child is abused outside the family they do not feel that they can tell their parents about it.
Victims of abuse of all ages and genders often feel guilty. They believe, or are being made to believe that what is being done to them is their fault somehow. But victimhood is never the victim’s fault. Human predators are nothing more than opportunists who take advantage of the availability or vulnerability of their victims in ordre to take what they want and meet their own needs. They are often very good at what they do. They can appear to be charming and they know how to lure prey into their web. Abuse always happens in the context of an imbalance of power. Victims either are powerless or they feel powerless. This is why we have to be especially observant and vigilant when we see relationships where power can be or is abused.
Domestic abuse and child abuse in all their forms thrive on and in isolation and secrecy. We can make it difficult for human predators/perpetrators to take what they want by not allowing them to isolate their victims, by listening to victims and taking them seriously and by making sure we prioritise taking them to safety. Even with the current lockdown we must pay attention and support those trapped in abusive relationship systems. There is no excuse for abuse. Perpetrators might try to justify what they do by saying they are stressed. But perpetrators would always find something to be stressed about and some excuse for what they do. What we have to focus on is what is being done and the impact it has on victims. What perpetrators say, does not really matter. Abuse causes life-long harm and trauma and the enormous effort to recover always ends up with the victim. No one chooses to be a victim!
What is Coercive Control?
Domestic abuse isn’t always physical. Coercive control is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim. This controlling behaviour is designed to make a person dependent by isolating them from support, exploiting them, depriving them of independence and regulating their everyday behaviour. Children are severely harmed if they are raised in an atmosphere of coercive control even if they are not targeted directly.
If you are under immediate threat the best thing to do is to contact the police or get someone to contact them for you. Do not allow yourself to become isolated, regardless of the social isolation we are under at the moment.
The Scottish Women’s Rights Centre provides legal and advocacy support to women aged 16 and over affected by violence and abuse. Our services include helplines, surgeries and legal representation. The SWRC is a collaboration between Rape Crisis Scotland (Scottish Charity No SCO25642), the University of Strathclyde Law Clinic and JustRight Scotland.
Here are a few options for crisis help and support:
• The Samaritans — 116 123 or by email at: email@example.com – Day or night, for anyone who’s struggling to cope, who needs someone to listen without judgement or pressure. Samaritans is not only for the moment of crisis, they’re taking action to prevent the crisis. They give people ways to cope and the skills to be there for others. They offer listening and support to people and communities in times of need.
• Breathing Space — 0800 83 85 87 — Breathing Space is a free, confidential, phone service for anyone in Scotland over the age of 16 experiencing low mood, depression or anxiety. (Opening hours: Monday-Thursday 6pm to 2am, Friday 6pm-Monday 6am. This service is for people in Scotland).
• Trauma Counselling Line Scotland — 08088 020406 – A free telephone counselling service for adults who experienced abuse in childhood.
• Combat Stress — 0800 138 1619, text 07537 404 719; or email at:
If you’re currently serving or have served in the UK Armed Forces, you can call the 24-hour mental health helpline. If you’re a family member or carer worried about the mental health of a loved one, or need to talk to someone yourself, you can call the helpline too.
The helpline is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
• Scottish Women’s Aid — 0800 027 1234
Scottish Women’s Aid Scottish is the lead organisation in Scotland working towards the prevention of domestic abuse.
• Rape Crisis Scotland (6pm to midnight daily) — 08088 01 03 02
The Rape Crisis Scotland National Helpline provides crisis support for anyone in Scotland affected by sexual violence at any time in their lives.
• Young people in the Scottish Highlands — 01463 70 55 97
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) based on the Raigmore Hospital Site.
• Young people anywhere in the UK:
- PAPYRUS — Prevention of Young Suicide UK
HOPELineUK: 0800 068 41 41
- YoungMinds — A charity committed to improving the emotional wellbeing and mental health of children and young people
Parents’ Helpline: 0808 802 5544
• You can also contact your GP, the police, the emergency line 999 if it is an emergency, or NHS24: 111.