(NORTH BAY, ON) -The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) North East Region is dedicated to providing support for domestic violence survivors.   

Understanding domestic violence is a complex issue. Domestic violence is a pattern of control, coercion or manipulation with one partner over another. 

How do you answer these questions:

  • Are you happy in your relationship? 
  • Are you respected? 
  • Are you safe in your relationship?
  • Is your relationship healthy? 
  • Does your spouse hurt you? 

We want you to know the cycle of abuse, so that you can recognize it in your relationships and in others.   

The cycle of violence always begins as a fairy tale where the relationship seems to be perfect. This is the "honeymoon" stage.   

Then it suddenly changes and becomes a relationship that causes you to question their love for you. You seem to be "walking on eggshells". No matter what you do, you can't please the other person. Nothing appears to be good enough. The abuser begins to control you. This phase can be described as the "tension building" stage. 

At times, the abuser may become physically violent or sexually abusive.  However, not all abusers are physically violent. They may use other types of abuse, such as emotional abuse, to make you feel bad about yourself. This stage is referred to as the "battering" or "explosive" stage.    

Victims of domestic assaults are not alone. If you have been assaulted by an intimate partner or know someone that has, there are local resources that can help. Contact your local family resource centre, shelter or victim services. A toll free call can also be placed to the Assaulted Women's Helpline at 1-866-863-0511 where your information will remain anonymous and confidential. If you are in an immediate crisis, dial 9-1-1.  

After the abuser releases this tension with physical or verbal aggression, the abuser apologizes to you and promises that they will never say or do it again. The cycle continues until you decide to leave or end this abuse.