The World Cup has begun, and with it comes the worry that domestic violence cases will increase
According to University of Lancaster research, when England loses a football match, the number of violent domestic abuse episodes rises by 38%. Additionally, rates are 26% higher when the team wins or ties.
A pattern of coercive and controlling behaviours, when one partner tries to maintain control over the other’s life, constitutes domestic abuse. It is a form of gendered abuse that combines emotional, verbal, psychological, financial, sexual, or physical forms of violence against women and is typically committed by men.
Domestic violence can take many different forms, ranging in severity from verbal and physical aggression to rape and strangulation.
International football tournaments are all too frequently accompanied by the fear of violent episodes at home for victims of domestic violence.
One must remember that football doesn’t cause domestic abuse, but a major game can be the spark for it to escalate or become more serious, as Women’s Aid made clear during last year’s Euros.
Here are five categories of domestic violence:
1. Physical abuse
2. Controlling behaviour
This is when someone has some degree of control over the victim’s life. This can involve limiting who the victim meets or converses with, limiting their social media access, dictating how they dress, and tracking their whereabouts.
3. Coercive actions
The victim is coerced to perform actions against their will, or they are continuously yelled at, made fun of, purposefully scared, intimidated, or made to feel as though they must tread carefully.
4. Financial abuse
The offender has financial control over the victim or limits the amount of money the victim can access for themselves or other people. This is also an example of a controlling behaviour.
5. Psychological abuse
Here, a perpetrator undermines someone’s self-assurance, perspective, or worldview.