Root Causes of Domestic Violence

Domestic violence in any form is unacceptable, but it is important to understand what the root cause of this abuse may be. Not to excuse the perpetrators behaviour in any way, but to help victims understand the abuse was not in their fault or warranted, to help the victim heal and hopefully to help the perpetrator understand that their behaviour is not okay and they have the capacity to work on their internal issues which lead to them being abusive. 

Some root issues which may lead to a perpetrator becoming abusive are:

Childhood experiences

It is possible an abuser may have witnessed or have experienced domestic violence as a child and understood violence to be a way to maintain control within a family, or view this behaviour as normal and acceptable.

Economic circumstances

Employment loss or change/ decrease in income, increased bills, difficulty paying bills, debt and other economic pressures can lead to stress and in turn violence and aggression. 


Personal insecurities may lead to perpetrators becoming controlling and abusive in order to maintain control. As victims become aware of the behaviour and try to leave the relationship, this can escalate the perpetrators abuse and they may feel abandoned or insecure and become desperate and in turn more abusive.

Significant life changes

Significant life changes such as career boosts, pregnancy or a family member being ill and in need of assistance may lead to a perpetrator feeling neglected or out of control which may cause them to become abusive or controlling.