Love Island contestant Adam Collard’s treatment of Rosie Williams has led to the charity Women’s Aid warning viewers of “gaslighting and emotional abuse”.
Gaslighting is manipulating someone by psychological means into doubting their own sanity.
Adam was on the receiving end of a backlash from viewers for his behaviour towards Rosie after he ditched her for new girl Zara McDermott.
After Rosie called him out for giving her the cold shoulder on Tuesday, while he flirted with Zara, Adam suggested his supposed change in behaviour was all in Rosie’s head.
“Classic Adam, using excuses, blaming me for his behaviour shall we say.” said Rosie. “He is not content with any girl. He always thinks he has the power and he always thinks he deserves better.”
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Rosie, meanwhile, was praised for standing up to Adam, and now Women’s Aid has encouraged viewers to “join her in recognising unhealthy behaviour in relationships and speaking out against all forms of domestic abuse”.
Katie Ghose, chief executive of Women’s Aid, said: “On the latest series of Love Island, there are clear warning signs in Adam’s behaviour. In a relationship, a partner questioning your memory of events, trivialising your thoughts or feelings, and turning things around to blame you can be part of pattern of gaslighting and emotional abuse.
“Last night, Rosie called out Adam’s unacceptable behaviour on the show. We ask viewers to join her in recognising unhealthy behaviour in relationships and speaking out against all forms of domestic abuse – emotional as well as physical. It is only when we make a stand together against abuse in relationships that we will see attitudes change and an end to domestic abuse.”
Also speaking on This Morning, Ghose said she accepts that Love Island is an “artificial environment” but if Adam’s actions were to happen repeatedly in real life they could be seen as a “form of emotional abuse”.
The charity encourages anyone experiencing abuse in a relationship to call the Freephone 24/7 National Domestic Violence Helpline, run by Women’s Aid in partnership with Refuge, on 0808 2000 247 or visit www.womensaid.org.uk.