Violence and abuse come in many forms

Some people think that abuse is only physical or sexual or mental but this is not the case. The abuse can also be digital or financial. It can often be difficult to figure out what is healthy or unhealthy in a relationship and when it is abuse.

If someone does one or more of this to you, it is probably abuse:

  • Threatens you.
  • Hurts you by kicking, beating or pushing.
  • Lose control of their temper.
  • Humiliates you.
  • Accuses you of something you haven’t done.
  • Isolates you from family or friends.
  • Shows insane jealousy.
  • ‍Goes through your phone or email without permission.
  • Tells you what you must do or how you must behave.
  • Pressures you or forces you to have sex.
  • Sends you an unwanted nude photo or pressures you to provide a nude photo.
  • Shops with your card without permission.

These are just a few examples. We encourage you to have a closer look on this page to familiarise yourself better with how abuse is manifested.

Get help

If you feel bad or you are worried, whether it is because of yourself or someone you know, it is best to talk to someone you trust. It can be for example someone in the family, a trainer, teacher, study counsellor or school psychologist. Those who are abusive can also get help.

You can always talk to someone through the help-line and web chat 1717. It is open 24 hours and you can talk in confidence about anything. No problem is too small or too big.

Bergið (The Rock) headspace is a support- and counselling centre which assists young people and is completely free of charge. You can make an appointment there with a counsellor who will review the problem, provide support and counselling.

Many health care centres have a special reception for young people at the age of 13-20 years. You can go there to talk about your health and how you feel.

You can call 112 or 1717 at any hour to get help.

You can call 112 or 1717 at any hour to get help.

Youngster violence

Recently pages and closed groups have popped upon social media showing videos of youngsters in rough fights while others stand idly by or cheer them on. Physical assaults like these can have very serious consequences, both for the person suffering the attack and for the attacker.

If you see a fight breaking out it's best to walk away and let the police know by contacting 112. It could save a life. If you know of a fight video posted online you should report it to the police (form in Icelandic).

Abuse in relationship

Abuse in relationships, also called domestic violence, is when the one who is abusive is related or connected to you. For example a family member, current or ex-boyfriend- or girlfriend, friends or a caregiver.

Examples of abuse is to slap, pinch, push, threaten, yell, neglect, groping and forcing others to do something sexual that they don’t want. To watch others in the home being abused is also abuse.

Sóley is a 13 years old girl who grew up with domestic violence. She has now moved to a another home with her mother. Today she is happy and safe.  

Respecting boundaries

Your boundaries and others’ boundaries are not necessarily the same. Everyone wants their boundaries to be respected. Do not harass or pressure others. It is abuse.

Teenagers against violence - English subtitles auto-generated


Everyone has a right to decide which sexual activities they consent or don’t consent to. If touching, kisses or something sexual is forced on others, it is sexual abuse. This video shows how easy it is to get consent by comparing it to offering a person a cup of tea.

Sex and communication

Sex is about having conversations, saying what you like and asking what the other one likes. Sex will never be as intimate as it should be unless you have the courage to ask and say what you think.

Digital sexual abuse

Digital sexual abuse is for example showing or distributing nude photos of others without permission, sending unwanted nude photos and sexual messages, pressuring others to send sexual photos of themselves, for example by wanting to pay for them, or using nude photos to stalk, threaten or extort money from others. Technology is always changing and so may appearance of digital sexual abuse.

A short film based on true stories from Icelandic reality when nude photos that are sent in confidence begin to disperse.

Inappropriate material of children and teenagers

If you see or know about any inappropriate material regarding children and teenagers on the internet, you can use Save The Children's tipline who will forward it to the police (form in Icelandic).

Assistance due to sexual abuse

If you are subjected to rape, rape attempt or other sexual violence, you can go to Neyðarmóttaka (Crisis Centre) for sexual abuse at Landspitali – the National University Hospital of Iceland in Fossvogur or in Akureyri. Nurses, psychologists and doctors are there, who can help mentally and physically.


Bullying is also abuse. Treat others as you want others to treat you. To watch bullying and do nothing is the same as participating. Bullying is everyone’s loss.

Bergið headspace

Bergið is a support- and counselling centre for young people up to 25 years old.


The Red Cross Helpline 1717 is a phone service and webchat for those who need someone to talk to in confidentiality. They are open 24 hours, and it's free to call.


Heilsuvera is an online service for the Healthcare Centers. On the Heilsuvera website, you can speak to a nurse through webchat.

Online safety

Today we use the internet to find all sorts of information and stay in touch with other people. Unfortunately that means it is easier to monitor where you go and what you do online. Learn how to stay safe online.

Manneskja horfir á símann sinn sem sýnir ólæsileg skilaboð. Hún snýr baki í okkur svo við sjáum á símann í höndunum á henni. Mikið liðað hár sveiflast í vindinum.


Are you between 10 and 12 years old? What are you supposed to do you live with violence and abuse? What is bullying and how do you use all those apps to talk to people?