Being stalked is a bewildering and terrifying experience for anyone, especially when it continues for a prolonged period of time.
Like domestic abuse, stalking is about one person controlling another – the stalker feels in a position of power over the person they are stalking, especially if the victim is fearful.
Women are disproportionally affected by stalking, with many being stalked by former partners who either refuse to accept the relationship is over or want to punish them for ending it. Former partners are the kind of stalkers who are most likely to resort to physical violence.
A stalker may pursue and harass the subject of his romantic intentions to such an extent that the victim’s family, friends and workmates are affected.
Are you being stalked?
It’s not always immediately obvious that you are being stalked, particularly if the stalker is someone you don’t know well or someone you might reasonably expect to run into on a regular basis.
Perhaps someone’s behaviour is making you feel uncomfortable, but you’re not certain that it is stalking.
Scared of someone? has listed the sort of obsessive behaviours displayed by stalkers.
Stalking and the law
Stalking and stalking involving fear or violence or serious harm and distress are offences under the Harassment Act 2012.
If you are being stalked, or suspect you are being stalked and you don’t know what to do, contact the National Stalking Helpline.
In an emergency, call 999.