Nobody can stop talking about convicted killer Simon Gittany’s new girlfriend, Rachelle Louise.
Gittany will spend the next 18 years in jail for the murder of his former partner, Lisa Harnum, whom he threw from a 15-story Sydney apartment.
That’s 18 years without parole as punishment for taking a life. But that sentence has also saved a life: Rachelle Louise’s.
As long as Simon Gittany is behind bars, Rachelle Louise is safe. She has that time to get herself out of an emotionally abusive relationship with a dangerous man. And I truly hope that’s exactly what she does.
We all watched Rachelle Louise’s exclusive interview with Channel 7 on Sunday Night in horror. We couldn’t look away as she fiercely defended her man, his innocence, and even his controlling behaviour.
She’s clearly been deftly manipulated by a controlling, calculating man with an eye for beautiful brunettes. Watching Rachelle Louise speak, so many of us could tell that she’s trapped in an emotionally abusive relationship. But would we know if our own friend was trapped in a similar situation?
We consulted experts in domestic abuse, self-help, and women’s protection to bring you some simple, important signs that someone you know could be in the throes of an emotionally abusive relationship.
Warning signs your friend is in an emotionally abusive relationship
There’s no flawless way to spot an abusive relationship, especially when the scars are emotional. But, please, use these warning signs as a decent start.
If a friend is showing any of these, it might be time to help her develop a safe exit plan.
Obviously, none of these in isolation is enough to prove that a friend is the victim of an emotional abuser. But if her behaviour matches any of these, consider how you might gather the compassion and courage to broach the subject with her.
You could save her from a fate like Lisa Harnum’s.
1. Her confidence is bruised.