Traits & Personas

Learn about the traits & personas of perpetrators of domestic abuse. The tactics and impacts are familiar to us in our lives. The difference with perpetrators of domestic abuse is that their motivation is to gain power and control over another.

The Freedom Programme format for training purposes is drawn from the stereotypes of female victim and male perpetrator, but is applicable to male victim/female perpetrator and same sex couples.  See the personas graphic Freedom Programme Personas


Traits & Personas or Mr RIght and Mr Wrong

The Bully: Sulks, Smashes things, Gritting their teeth, Displaying weapons, Stalks you, Kicks walls and doors, Secret gestures – only you know, Drives too fast with us in the car, Cold eyes.

The  Headworker: Objectifies and compares our physique with others, tells other people our secrets, tells me I’m ugly, has affairs with other women, makes me feel guilty, makes me think I’m going mad by moving furniture and denies it,  doesn’t use my name, tells me I must be suffering PMT,  tells me Im useless, uses the word, ‘woman’ as an insult.

The Jailer: Leaves the room when friends visit, tells me my friend made a pass at him, creates a row when I want to go out, has affairs with my friends, tells me my friends don’t like me, goes everywhere with me, doesn’t take a key when he goes out, hides my shoes, keeps me pregnant, moves me away from my support networks.

The Liar: Tells me he only pushed me, tells me I started it, denies he’s been abusive when challenged, tells me I made him abusive, says it only happened because he was drunk/high, says he was abusive because he was jealous, says he’s suffering from Gulf War Syndrome, says I must have him back as he’s dying of Cancer, says he’s abusive because he’s insecure.

The Badfather: tells the kids I’m stupid, uses the court system to continue abusing me, refuses to ‘baby-sit’, denies paternity, tells me I can leave but the children stay, asks the children to check up on me, contradicts my parenting of the children, hits me when the children are in the house, tells me and the authorities I’m a bad mother, demeans me in front of the children.

The King of the Castle: expects dinner on the table as soon as he’s home, takes all the money, burns dinner, comes and goes as he pleases, ‘helps me’ do the house work, ignores the housework until we do it, pretends he can’t cook and clean, has his own chair no one else is allowed to use, complains if I spend money – even my own, asks us where his things are eg ‘where’s my shirt’.

The Persuader: tells me he’ll kill himself, says he has nowhere to go, threatens to report me to Social Services if I leave, cries on the doorstep, threatens to kill the children if I leave, promises to see Relate counsellor if I have him back, states, “unless you take me back I will follow you to the ends of the earth”, says I must have him back he’s terminally ill, attempts suicide, promises to go to ‘anger management’.

The Sexual Controller: invites my friend for a 3 some, nags for sex until I give in, rapes me whether I’m asleep or awake, ejaculates prematurely and blames me, blackmails me into having sex e.g. he’ll give me food shopping money, or buy much needed coats for the kids, says I must be Lesbian if I refuse him sexually, tells me I’m unnatural if I refuse sex with him, asks the surgeon to stitch me up tight after child birth, refuses to have sex with me because I’m too disgusting, visits Gentleman’s Clubs.

Also see: Stats & Facts, The Domestic Abuse QuizWarning Signs,Safety Planning, Reports archive. Freedom Programme Personas Graphic.