Think Pieces

Emotional support for victims of domestic abuse

7 December, 2022

Being a victim of abuse or violence can affect your physical, emotional and mental health and wellbeing, as well as that of your family and friends.

It can affect finances and relationships, and impact your life in many different ways.

Victim Support Scotland is here to support you. It’s natural to experience a range of emotions such as anxiety, confusion and anger. You may feel completely overwhelmed and unclear about what you should do next.

We can help you understand what you’re going through, cope with how you are feeling and manage your emotional stress.

There are a number of reactions and emotions often shared by victims of crime:

  • A fear of leaving the house or your ‘safe space’ after escaping abuse
  • Flashbacks to the event
  • Nightmares
  • A sense of being overwhelmed
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Tearfulness
  • Self-blame

For many victims of domestic abuse or gender-based violence the experience is often traumatic and long-lasting.

It’s important to remember that these reactions are normal and that everyone responds differently.

If you require emotional support following gender-based violence or domestic abuse, Victim Support Scotland is here for you. You can access our online chat by clicking the pop-up below, or contact our helpline on 0800 160 1985.

Alternatively, Scotland’s Domestic Abuse and Forced Marriage Helpline is available 24/7. Call free on 0800 027 1234 or email and web chat at