*Several threads came together for this blog:
1. One thread is the long-running radio soap opera, 'The Archers' on BBC Radio 4.
Soaps like to have a villain. It generates media interest and increased listening figures. Soaps are also good at highlighting problems in their audience's lives, such as addictions, relationship problems, ill health, elderly care and domestic abuse. The latter has rarely been heard on 'The Archers', but over the last two years, a storyline has steadily been building around a character, Helen Archer, who recently married Rob Titchener. This man is using psychological manipulation, emotional abuse and possibly sexual abuse to gradually take control of all aspects of his wife's life.
I have been a listener for decades, but find this storyline disturbing, as do many other women. Some people have stopped listening until the character is written out. I can listen and realise that it's only actors standing in a studio reading a script, but it's still difficult to hear at times. The scriptwriters and actors are to be congratulated for making it feel so real.
2. A second thread is that I belong to a voluntary service organisation for women and children, called Soroptimist International (Great Britain & Ireland) www.sigbi.org Many of the clubs in the UK and worldwide work on projects supporting women who have been abused. In highlighting the projects, it was decided to use the Archer's storyline to increase awareness of the Soroptimists organisation and their work. 'Women inspiring action, transforming lives.' A Facebook page has been set up called: Help the Ambridge One. It features project work being carried out by a variety of Soroptimist International clubs.
- Makes me feel safe
- Makes me feel comfortable.
- Listens to me
- Values my opinions
- Supports what I want to do in life
- Is truthful with me
- Admits to being wrong
- Respects me
- Likes that I have other friends
- Makes me laugh
- Trusts me
- Treats me as an equal
- Respects my family
- Understands my need for time alone or with family
- Accepts me as I am
- Is jealous
- Is possessive
- Tries to control me
- Gets violent, loses temper quickly
- Always blames me
- Is sexually demanding
- Keeps me from seeing friends and family
- Makes all the decisions
- Embarrasses me in front of others
- Hits me
- Makes me cry
- Is always ‘checking up’ on me
- Takes my money and other things
- Threatens to leave me if I don’t do what I’m told
- Teases, bullies and puts me down