What is Domestic Violence & Abuse? Expand “Domestic abuse is physical, emotional, or sexual abuse taking place within the context of the family home. It could be between adults, between adults and children, or between children. It is important to remember that however abuse presents itself, it is NEVER the fault of the victim. It is 100% the choice and responsibility of the perpetrator.” - Marilyn Shear Goodman, 1995. Domestic abuse is a very complex subject. Thinking differently about domestic abuse means understanding that it is not a series of isolated incidents affecting an individual victim, but rather a pattern of abusive behaviour which takes place over time, by an individual who exerts power, control or coercion over another. Women are more likely to be abused than men. That doesn't mean that it can’t happen to men but women are disproportionately more likely to experience it. Anyone can experience domestic abuse regardless of their race, gender, ethnic minority, religious group, age, class or disability. It is important to recognise that abuse goes a lot further than psychological and physical harm; it can also appear in the form of emotional abuse, sexual abuse, financial abuse, harassment or stalking, coercive control and online/digital abuse.