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Archers’ abuse plot

I’m not a fan of The Archers.

But Britain’s longest running radio soap opera, formerly ‘an everyday story of country folk’, made headlines in April when its plot of domestic abuse came to a dramatic climax as Helen Titchener, at the end of her tether, stabbed her emotionally manipulative husband Rob. Even I sat down and listened! It brought to public attention the sorts of shocking family situations which domestic abuse charities, social workers and sometimes pastors, have to address.

John Benton, Editor

Figure Image

The dominator

This kind of abuse is generally different from domestic violence. Usually perpetrated by men on women (but vice versa does occur) it is about undermining the other person and their self-confidence. This takes place through continually questioning their competency, or making them feel guilty, or inadequate. I came upon one situation in which when a beautiful woman appeared on TV the husband would comment ‘there’s a real woman, not like you!’ It might take the more subtle form of feigning care but saying: ‘I’d better do that, dear – you’re not very good at things, are you?’