Domestic abuse (DA) has gone from a private to a public issue more recently within public media and British Politics & legislation, for example. With the likes of the Domestic Abuse Draft Bill, the introduction of DA Workplace Champions and more proposed funding for refuges there has been a much more open conversation about what domestic abuse as opposed to domestic violence is, and how big of a problem it actually is.
Whilst not all story lines are issue based of course, British Soaps are a useful medium in conveying serious real-life community issues and stories, using their platform to bring these topics directly into the living rooms of millions in the UK. More recently, amongst them have been storylines covering mental health, suicide, rape, human trafficking, knife crime and too many others to list!
If you keep up with Corrie you will have seen the current storyline between characters Geoff and Yasmeen exploring gaslighting tactics and coercive behaviour; all forms of abuse! Installing CCTV, spying, emotionally manipulating behind closed doors - making viewers face the realities of an abusive relationship without the physical scars, making an exceptionally uncomfortable watch.
However uncomfortable though, this character story is hugely important and is certainly having an impact; with many turning to social media to express their "disgust", "shock" and for some, even confusion at a "nice character" manipulating a "strong woman"; and that's where Corrie Writers have got it so right! There's no '"type" of person that is a victim of abuse. It's a reality for so many, of all genders and sexualities, across the country, and for many who are unfamiliar with it, it is see-it-to-believe it issue.
So many of our women, and people across the country, will relate to this story and we say good job Coronation Street on forcing this often unspoken, undermined, and misunderstood issue of non-physical DA into public consciousness! Keep using your platforms to speak out; and for viewers, take more from your 7:30pm leisurely watch and see the truth behind the TV screen, educate yourselves and be more understanding; it's a real experience for so many. There are many online rescources about gaslighting, coercive control, and also lots of information on support channels.
If you'd like support for the issues raised above (and are a woman 18+) you can join our women's only charity, Tomorrow's Women Wirral, free of charge to receive non-jugdmental, confidential support. Or please use the contacts below:
- If in immediate danger call 999
- Men's Advice Line: 0800 800 0024
- National Lesbian. Gay, Bisexual and Trans Domestic Violence helpline: 0800 999 5428
- Victim Support Helpline: 0808 16 89 111