After eight years of marriage, my husband has started hitting me.
It is totally out of character and after the first time, my husband was so sorry that I dismissed it as a one-off incident.
It happened again a few weeks after that and since then (almost six months now), it has been happening with increasing frequency and ferocity.
So much so that although my husband is always devastated afterwards and deeply sorry, I feel something must be done.
I can’t go on never knowing when he is going to hit me again. What can I do? JE
FIONA SAYS: LEAVE HIM
You should leave him, right away. He has a problem and he has to learn to sort it out, but that doesn’t mean you should be at risk while he finds out what has triggered this kind of behaviour. Help is available from a number of different sources.
Contact the Refuge/Women’s Aid Federation Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247.
It can provide you with emergency and temporary accommodation, as well as advice, information and support.
If your husband wants to change, then point him towards help from Respect, the national association for domestic violence perpetrator programmes.
If he's genuinely sorry and really wants to change, then such programmes are for him and he should call the Respect helpline on 0808 802 4040.
If not, then the best thing you can do is stay as far away from him as possible.