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Domestic abuse in pregnancy

If your partner is violent

Domestic abuse or domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, psychological or financial. It is often a combination of these.

Pregnancy can be a trigger for domestic abuse, and existing abuse may get worse during pregnancy or after giving birth.

Domestic abuse during pregnancy puts you and your unborn child in danger. It increases the risk of miscarriage, infection, premature birth, and injury or death to the baby.

It can also cause emotional and mental health problems, such as stress and anxiety, which can affect the development of the baby.

Find out how to recognise the signs of domestic abuse

Getting help

If you're pregnant and being abused, get help. You can speak in confidence to a:

  • GP
  • midwife
  • obstetrician
  • health visitor
  • social worker

Information about you will not be shared with other services without your permission, unless there's a concern that your unborn child or other children in your family, or someone else, is at risk of serious harm.

You can also get support from:

Immediate action required: Call 999 now if:

You are in immediate danger.

Video: Why am I being asked about domestic abuse?

In this video, a midwife explains why you are being asked about domestic abuse when pregnant.

Media last reviewed: 20 March 2020
Media review due: 20 March 2023

Page last reviewed: 20 April 2021
Next review due: 20 April 2024