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Talking to Children about Domestic Violence and Abuse

Talking to Children about Domestic Violence and Abuse

An excellent guide for parents and practitioners on how to talk to children about the domestic abuse they have experienced has been developed by ADVA in Devon and shared by many local councils.

You can download it here. Below I summarise this excellent guide.

Children who have lived with domestic abuse may feel:

  • Powerless
  • Confused
  • Angry
  • Guilty
  • Afraid
  • Alone

Children need:

  • to hear that it is not their fault
  • to talk about their feelings and experience in their own time
  • to know that you are going to help them stay safe
  • your patience and understanding
  • to know that violence is never ok

General Tips:

  • Denial does not help the child - this just teaches them that violence is normal. Denial makes them feel isolated and crazy.
  • It is a lot scarier for children if no one ever talks about the violence and abuse and allows them to talk about it themselves.
  • Acknowledge that it may be challenging for you to talk about it too.
  • Speak about your ex in a general way - no name calling.
  • Set respectful limits if the child is acting out the violence they have seen.
  • Share your own concerns with another adult.

Restored has developed a Handbook for Female Survivors of Domestic Abuse.

Many sections in the handbook can apply to all female survivors of abuse with any faith background or none. Included in the wide range of helpful subjects are chapters on supporting children

How to order a copy

This resource is free* for survivors of domestic abuse. To receive your copy please send us an email to info@restoredrelationships.org indicating your postal address.

If you are not a survivor and would like a copy of this handbook, we would appreciate a minimum donation to cover our cost of £5.00 - But if you can, £10.00 would be awesome! Click here to donate. After donating, please send us a confirmation email with your postal details at info@restoredrelationships.org. Alternatively, you can make a deposit at


Account No. 65417560

Sort Code 08 92 99

Please include in your reference the word "handbook"

Your contribution is helping us to continue to make this resource available for survivors.

Fore more information or to order from outside the UK. Please send us an email to info@restoredrelationships.org