Abuse includes emotional abuse, sexual abuse, physical abuse and neglect. Domestic violence is a term used to describe emotional, physical or sexual abuse from a family member or in a relationship.

  • Emotional abuse
    When someone threatens, humiliates, bullies, intimidates, calls you worthless or belittles you. It can include things such as constant criticism; threats; being controlled by someone; being constantly put down; and having your things distroyed.

  • Physical abuse
    When someone deliberately injures, attacks or assaults you. It can include things such as being pushed; punched; slapped or beaten; having your hair pulled; or being spat on.

  • Sexual abuse
    When someone forces you to have sexual contact against your will. It can include things such as being raped; being forced to strip or give sexual favours; or being touched inappropriately.

  • Neglect
    When a child, young, elderly or dependant person does not have enough food; care or supervision; clothing; medical care; or somewhere warm and clean to live. It can include things such as when a child's parents leave them alone for a long time, or do not provide enough food.

Abuse and domestic violence can happen to anyone. If you experience or see abuse - or domestic violence - this may impact on your mental health. Even if it happened a long time ago, it can still affect how you feel today. It can help to get support.

Support for abuse and domestic violence

  • Get support now
    If you are experiencing abuse or domestic violence, there is support available to help keep you safe. If you are in immediate danger, you can contact the Gardai or call 999. You can also contact the Women’s Aid national helpline on 1800 341 900.

  • Sexual assault or rape
    If you need to talk to someone in confidence about sexual assault or rape, the Rape Crisis Centre (1800 77 88 88) can help.

  • Support for men
    Amen (046-9023718) is a service for men who are experiencing domestic violence.

  • Support for older people
    Older people who are experiencing abuse in the home can call the HSE information line on 1850 24 1850.

  • Support for children and young people
    Childline (1800 66 66 66 or text Talk to 50101) is a confidential support service for children and young people.  They take calls about a wide range of difficulties experienced by chidren and young people, including abuse.

  • National Counselling Service
    The H.S.E. National Counselling Service (N.C.S.) is a professional, confidential counselling and psychotherapy service available free of charge nationwide. Priority is given to adults who have experienced trauma and abuse in childhood, with priority given to adult survivors of institutional abuse in Ireland. The national helpline can be reached on 1800 235 235.

  • More information and support
    -The Women’s Aid website has lots of practical information on warning signs, how to help yourself and how to support someone else who is experiencing domestic violence.

    -A G.P. can help by referring you to appropriate supports and services in your local area. 

    -Your local Citizens Information Centre can also give you information on your rights and the supports and services available in your local area.