Domestic violence victim: Physical abuse often starts with mental abuse ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

Laura Christine Arba on Monday's "Ringvaade".

Physical abuse tends to be preceded by mental abuse, according to a victim of domestic violence whose former partner is currently serving a sentence.

Appearing on current affairs show "Ringvaade" Monday evening, Laura Christine Arba said that the physical abuse she suffered followed quite closely on from psychological abuse.

"By the first time he raised his hand against me, I had already been so spiritually beaten down that my life had in effect already disappeared," Arba said on the show.

"I couldn't remember who I was, what I wanted from life. I did everything just so as not to irritate him," she continued, adding that the mental abuse was often worse than the physical.

Ultimately Arba was too afraid for her life to leave her former partner, actor Daniel Sepp.

"When you see what that person is capable of, you also realize that leaving is often more dangerous than remaining in that regard."

Arba's former partner had made death threats both against her and her parents, forbade her to communicate with friends, and used tracking apps to keep tabs on where she was going, she said.

In the end, Laura Christine had to document in writing and in photos all violent episodes, which the police later made good use of. She also recorded her ex-partner's outbursts on her phone, in the hopes that should he actually kill her, the recordings would be found and lead to a sentencing.

Readers with Estonian can view the original "Ringvaade" segment here.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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