Domestic abuse is any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexuality. This can encompass but is not limited to the following types of abuse:
Controlling behaviour is a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and/or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.
Coercive behaviour 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 definition, which is not a legal definition, includes so called 'honour’ based violence, female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage. Domestic abuse occurs across society, regardless of age, gender, race, sexuality, wealth, and geography.
Whatever form it takes, domestic abuse is rarely a one-off incident, and should instead be seen as a pattern of abusive and controlling behaviour through which the abuser seeks power over their victim. Typically the abuse involves a pattern of abusive and controlling behaviour, which tends to get worse over time. The abuse can begin at any time, in the first year, or after many years of life together. It may begin, continue, or escalate after a couple have separated and may take place not only in the home but also in a public place.
Asking for support and advice is often a very difficult thing to do if you are feeling isolated or low in yourself. You may not even feel that you deserve to have support.
It is important to know that there are services out there that can provide advice at the right level for you, your children, family and friends.
Often the first step to breaking the cycle of abuse is sharing your problem with another person whether that is through the helpline, outreach worker or a support group.
Follow the links on this page for more specific information and advice on particular topics.
Domestic abuse information and advice that's relevant throughout England and Wales (much of it also applicable in other areas of the UK) can be accessed through the links on the left.
Below you will find additional information that's specifically relevant to Wokingham.
In Wokingham, thousands of people are affected by domestic abuse every year. The Buckinghamshire Community Safety Partnership is dedicated to helping victims and preventing abuse and will continue in their task to make the county and its residents as safe as possible.
Support Numbers for Wokingham
(for national numbers, see the support numbers page)
Thames Valley Police - in an emergency call 999 or use the 24-hour non-emergency number: 101
Berkshire Women's Aid (BWA) - call 0118 950 4003. In Berkshire, Women's Aid provides services for both male and female victims of domestic abuse.
Victim Support - call 01344 411 411
Citizens' Advice Bureau - call 0844 499 4126
Home Refuge Scheme
The Home Refuge Scheme is a free service for anyone suffering abuse and wanting to remain in their home. It provides security measures such as door chains, viewers, and window locks, so you can stay safe in your home.
You will also be offered support from Berkshire Women’s Aid and have a full fire safety check from Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service.
If you would like our help:
- Call our Home Refuge Officer on 0118 974 3799
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
More information about domestic abuse in Wokingham
Domestic abuse strategy (PDF document)
Domestic violence disclosure scheme (PDF document)