Advanced search

abuse during pregnancy

(15 Posts)
KettleCHips Sun 31-May-09 16:45:15

My on-off partner who was furious that I am pregnant lost his temper last week and tried to break my arm in a prolonged struggle. When that did not work, he tried to throttle me in order to make me faint, so as to get past me to the door. I reported him to the police but he reported that I slapped him which I did, so in the end, I ended up being charged for common assault with a police record. Has anyone got any similar experience? I feel so sad, and angry. I felt this was totally unjust and there is every good reason for women not to report violence. I was in the police station up to 1 am, I told them I was bleeding (threatened miscarriage) and 2 months pregnant but they say I have to be treated like my partner.

SAEJ Sun 31-May-09 17:06:16

Was he charged?

Are you going to court?

sleepyeyes Sun 31-May-09 17:16:56

Kettle surely when you slapped him it was self defense?
I would see a lawyer and challenge it. Did they allow you to see a doctor whilst in the station?
If not I would go to the police complaints commission and make sure it goes on record.

SAEJ Sun 31-May-09 17:22:57

Kettle basically this is current CPS practice - hopefully common sense will prevail if it even reaches court.

Sleepy is correct in that you should speak to a solicitor - counter allegations are very common but have to be investigated and courts take a dim view on domestic violence, the police do not have any option other than to charge you - a court will apply the test of self defence and if the incident is as described then you will not be prosecuted.

Hopefully he has been given bail conditions to protect you? If not then you should see a solicitor to seek an injunction with a power of arrest. The police will have a domestic abuse unit who can support you in seeking this.

amisuchabadmummy Sun 31-May-09 17:37:44

im honestly not judging here but next time just let him go, dont block the way to the door.

KettleCHips Sun 31-May-09 17:38:36

I don't know what I feel. The slap happened first after he said something derogatory; then 20 minutes later, unrelated to the slap; he snapped and had a go at me.
The police said they have to charge both of us the same and they advised me not to go to CPS because I will lose my simple caution and in any case, I had admitted to slapping him--- something else will happen - not sure what - it was all confusing, I was bleeding and just shaking and felt so angry about the whole thing. So I accepted the caution but it turned out my occupation is notifiable; so in the end, this has been completely awful - I was in the police station twice, second was an arrest, I have a police record for common assault, and my employer will be notified. He has only been given a simple caution for common assault too, and he is still father to the unborn baby (if it gets through). I think I am just upset, ashamed, angry and feel alone; and think this is totally unjust.

SAEJ Sun 31-May-09 17:46:04

Kettle I do sympathise - honest - but basically you have committed common assault - a comment will not, in the eyes of a court justify a slap - reasonable force is the test.

It is clear that your relationship is abusive but by your own admission you struck the first blow and while I absolutely agree that this in no way justifies him attacking you it does explain why you have received a caution.

You need to see a solicitor or at the very least go to Citizens advice - a caution may be challenged but you will need to do it quickly.

I would also strongly suggest you seek an injunction with a power of arrest and ensure that you document any contact made to you by your ex as this will be very relevant should you wish to prevent him or limit his access to your child.

LovelyMonster Sun 31-May-09 17:46:22

Do you have a midwife yet? The hospital should have a specialist domestic violence midwife who can offer you confidential advice and support.

KettleCHips Sun 31-May-09 17:56:26

Hi LM, no - I'm 12 weeks just - and have been bleeding on and off, so nobody knows if I will make it.

dizietsma Sun 31-May-09 17:58:13

Firstly what happened to you is unacceptable.

You are in a violent relationship, what he did was absolutely wrong, and even if you slapped him that is absolutely no justification for what he did to you.

Trying to break your arm... beggars belief angry

Please contact Women's Aid as soon as possible.

Stay away from this man, stay with family or friends and find yourself a solicitor as soon as possible to advise you on your legal position. I think Women's aid should be able to point you in the right direction for solicitors, if not then go to citizens advice.

I suggest you go to the Relationships forum, there are a lot of women on there who have been in a similar position to you and come through it with sage advice.


KettleCHips Sun 31-May-09 18:14:25

Hi DZ - thanks - what you said made me cry. I know SAEJ is right about everything- thanks. I just can't tell you the sense of shame I feel. I can't bear to tell anyone, and to think that I was in the police station. On the day in question, I had just miscarried the first of twins, I was in such a state (I know this may sound like I am trying to justify things) and all I wanted was to speak to him, and he asked me to bugger off. Somehow I have to come to terms with my anger with him and the system over this, I just can't believe that I got off worse and the police kept telling me that I slapped him and it's not different. But it was very very different. He used all his strength to try and break my arm because he said he could. and when he couldn't manage that as I resisted, he had his arm round my neck and applied pressure till I was seeing stars. Why is it the same???

SAEJ Sun 31-May-09 18:26:34

I am surprised that he also received a simple caution for what appears to be actual bodily harm - the two offences are not the same and it is very unusual to allow a caution for domestic violence - it is not allowed in the area where I work.

Again, I can only agree with DZ. This is abuse, it is wrong. You need and deserve specialist support and help.

A solicitor would also help you to appeal against his caution - particularly if he was given a caution for common assault and if you have any subsequent injuries?

If you have any marks etc as a result of this attack then you need to see your Dr and get them evidenced.

Longtalljosie Sun 31-May-09 18:45:16

I'd take your solicitor's advice about whether to go to the CPS or not. From the police's point of view, you not challenging it is easy, case closed. It's true you may lose your simple caution, but your solicitor can advise you best, and as you say your job has been affected anyway.

Please put yourself and your baby first. Your involvement with this man has already affected your career. SAEJ is right you shouldn't have slapped him, but you are not equally culpable in this at all, and you shouldn't feel as much. Would you ever try to break his arm, or throttle him, even if you were able? I doubt it.

Domestic violence is frequently worse during pregnancy, and it doesn't stop when babies come along, either.

dizietsma Mon 01-Jun-09 10:44:23

KC, I know you feel ashamed, but you are not the one who needs to feel ashamed. You are the victim, he's the abuser. He's tried to frame it the other way around, because that's what abusers do- blame the victim. Signs of domestic violence- see denial.

He's the one who seriously assaulted you. You slapped him, FFS. He's brought that up with the police so he could claim mitigating circumstances for his violence not because he was genuinely terrorised.

A slap? Do you think he'd tell his mates in the pub that he called the cops on his partner because she slapped him and he's an abused man? What you did was not OK, but it was not on the same level as trying to break someone's arm. There are degrees of assault, and a jury of 12 of your peers would never say that a slap is even close to equivalent to the horrors you went through.
I'm angry at the police you saw for implying that, I suggest any future contact with the cops should go through a different police station, this lot sound awful, preferably speak to a dedicated domestic violence team.

You need to speak to Women's Aid, you have nothing to feel ashamed about, you are a victim no matter what the cops say.

You need to speak to a solicitor who can stand up for your best interests. It doesn't matter if you think you deserve punished or not, everyone even murderers, deserve to have their best interests represented by a lawyer when they get into legal difficulties. Unless you get good advice, the system can crush you. It's toweringly stacked against the individual, you are expected to get advice and are doing a serious disservice to yourself if you don't get representation.

I would also suggest that you go get that arm x-rayed, and get checked out at the hospital. He might not have broken it, but you may have small fractures and I imagine you have some killer bruises. Photograph all visible bruising. You don't have to do anything about it now, but having the evidence may be good some time down the line when you feel strong enough to press charges. If you don't document it now, you wont be able to do anything.

Ryn Mon 01-Jun-09 16:28:42

All i can say is how sorry I am for you and that all the best advice is above!!! Deffo go through Womens Aid and the Police should havea domestic violence unit that can offer support should he try anything again!! I have had my own experiences and the police were terrible with me until the domestic violence unit got involved and they were tremendous!

You will come through this it just takes time but it is NOTHING to be ashamed of!!! You are not alone. Sadly there are loads of us who have experienced similar and believe me, you will be a stronger women for it and a fantastic mother.

Get all of the help that you can! The biggest shame would be if you didnt. Use what is available and the best way to fight back is to not let it ruin you and be stronger for it.

Big hugs smile

ps. please write EVERYTHING down as advised, it was the best thing I did as ensured my daughters safety. Dates, times the lot xxxx

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now