Skip links

How can families and society hold perpetrators accountable?

At the heart of domestic abuse lies the coercive controller, a perpetrator whose manipulation and dominance thrive when not held accountable.

Tragically, when families fail to hold these abusers accountable, it unwittingly reinforces their power and control, perpetuating a cycle of violence that impact lives and communities.

Coercive control is a form of domestic abuse characterised by psychological manipulation, intimidation, and isolation, aimed at dominating and controlling the victim.

Unlike physical violence, which leaves visible scars, coercive control operates insidiously, leaving victims trapped in a web of fear, dependency, and isolation.

Yet, despite its devastating impact, coercive control often goes unnoticed and unaddressed by society, allowing perpetrators to operate with impunity.

One of the most significant contributors to the perpetuation of coercive control is society’s failure to hold perpetrators accountable.

When abusers are not held responsible for their actions, they are emboldened to escalate their abusive behaviour, secure in the knowledge that they will face no consequences.

This lack of accountability sends a dangerous message that domestic abuse is permissible, further entrenching the abuser’s power and control over their victim.

Moreover, societal silence and indifference serve to validate the abuser’s distorted perception of reality.

When society turns a blind eye to domestic abuse or dismisses it as a private matter, it reinforces the abuser’s belief that their behavior is acceptable or even justified.

This validation only serves to bolster the abuser’s sense of entitlement and superiority, fueling their abusive tendencies and further eroding the victim’s sense of self-worth and agency.

Furthermore, the failure of society to hold coercive controllers accountable perpetuates a culture of impunity, wherein abusers are emboldened to exert control over their victims with impunity.

This culture of impunity not only enables individual perpetrators but also perpetuates systemic inequalities and injustices that disproportionately impact marginalised communities.

To break the cycle of domestic abuse and hold coercive controllers accountable, society must first acknowledge the insidious nature of coercive control and recognise it as a form of abuse worthy of attention and intervention.

Society must send a clear and unequivocal message that domestic abuse, in all its forms, will not be tolerated.

By holding coercive controllers accountable and supporting victims, society can break the cycle of abuse and create a safer, more just world for all.

Silence and indifference only serve to empower abusers and perpetuate their reign of terror.

It’s time for society to speak out and stand up against domestic abuse in all its forms and understand by saying perpetrators will change but with no element of proper support doesn’t help the victim , perpetrators or their families.

Remember perpetrators can change if they choose to and want to for the right reasons but they will not change in a toxic environment.

Victims of domestic abuse will also not give up on the one thing they know and understand and that is the perpetrators behaviour which becomes normalised.

If society including families don’t hold perpetrators accountable- who will?

As not all coercive controlling cases even reach the police attention, and when they do it’s usually when the victim is murdered.

Leave a comment