I’m for truth, no matter who tells it. I’m for justice, no matter who it’s for or against. Malcolm X
Narcissistic Abuse is a terrible injustice perpetrated on defenceless and, very often oblivious, victims. When the truth about the abuse finally transpires, many victims turn to the law to try to get justice for the terrible harm that was inflicted on them. However, justice is still lagging when it comes to psychological abuse because evidencing that an offence has taken place can prove difficult if not impossible.
Very often, the victim is seen as responsible for the abuse that took place as “it takes two to tango” or the abuse is being played down as “just a toxic relationship.” Only when a more serious crime such as ABH, GBH or murder takes place will the police proceed to an arrest and decide press charges.
In the UK, on 29 December 2015, Section 76 of the Serious Crime Act 2015 created a new offence of controlling or coercive behaviour in an intimate or family relationship. The offence was defined as follows:
An offence is committed by A if A repeatedly or continuously engages in behaviour towards another person, B, that is controlling or coercive; and at time of the behaviour, A and B are personally connected; and the behaviour has a serious effect on B; and A knows or ought to know that the behaviour will have a serious effect on B.
There are two ways in which it can be proved that A’s behaviour has a ‘serious effect’ on B, If it causes B to fear, on at least two occasions, that violence will be used against them or If it causes B serious alarm or distress which has a substantial adverse effect on their day-to-day activities.
It is clear to me that Narcissistic Abuse falls within the scope of this law. Nonetheless, the police do not consider it so because most times, there is no tangible proof that the victim was abused.
I discussed this topic in one of my earlier posts The Right Thing, written nearly two years ago in May 2017. I had broken up with him the previous month and was in a terrible state emotionally and mentally. The police were ready to charge my ex-boyfriend for physical assault, but as far as coercive or controlling behaviour was concerned, they did not think that the account of the psychological abuse I gave amounted to such an offence.
There is still a long way to go before the justice system recognises Narcissistic Abuse as a crime and brings the offenders to justice but with the development of technology, there should be new ways to record evidence that can be used to prosecute offenders.
I believe that it is important that victims continue sharing their experiences in order to raise awareness of this hidden form of abuse and its devastating consequences. Narcissistic Abuse leaves scars that may be invisible to others, but they do exist, and they ruin lives. I would like to turn my personal struggle into a collective struggle. United we can achieve more!
One day victims will be able to get justice for Narcissistic Abuse and perpetrators will get their just desert.