Love Island criticized by Women's Aid, 'abuse should not be used for entertainment'

Love Island has been criticized again by a women's group committed to ending domestic violence

Love Island
(Image credit: ITV)

Love Island has been criticized again by Women's Aid, a women's group against domestic violence. Following shows aired this week, they said, "producers should step in when any form of behavior is abusive, as abuse should not be used for entertainment." 

Love Island is a hugely successful show that originated from UK programmer ITV. The show has now been developed across the globe, with spin-offs in the US and Australia meaning you can now watch Love Island from anywhere in the world.

Despite the show's enormous success, it has been constantly criticized by various groups who have picked up on the emotional manipulation and abusive behaviors that have been directed at women in the show. 

Women's Aid, a group that advocates against violence against women, has spoken up to discuss why some of the relationship dynamics in the show are unsafe for audiences to be viewing.

In a statement on their website, they said, "last night, we saw the development of Danny and Lucinda’s relationship and became increasingly concerned with his behavior towards her on-screen, including what looked like gaslighting, possessiveness, and manipulation. This is not what a healthy relationship looks like. These are all tactics used by perpetrators of abuse."

The group then explained that 'gaslighting' is a criminal offense, and has been for the past six years.

The statement continued to say, "gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse which makes someone question their perception of reality. It is a form of coercive control, which has been a criminal offense since 2015."

Women's Aid then made a plea to the producers of the show to step in and protect the women who are at risk because of this behavior.

"We urge the producers of Love Island to recognise coercive control when it is happening on the show, as this is not the first time it has happened. Producers should step in when any form of behavior is abusive, as abuse should not be used for entertainment," read the statement.

This is not the first time that Women's Aid has made a statement against Love Island and on several occasions, the group has called for the Love Island watchers to take note of the abusive behaviors being portrayed on-screen.

In 2019 the group released a statement about controlling relationships and the soaring number of complaints made about a relationship depicted on the show.

Adina Claire, Co-Chief Executive of Women’s Aid, said at the time, “Controlling behavior is never acceptable, and with Love Island viewers complaining to Ofcom in record numbers about Joe’s possessive behavior towards Lucie, more people are becoming aware of this and want to challenge it."

"Abusive relationships often start off with subtle signs of control, so it’s important that it is recognised at an early stage. Love Island viewers are now very vocal in calling out unhealthy behavior between couples on the show, and this is a positive development.”

If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse in a relationship, call Refuge’s Freephone 24/7 National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247 or visit www.womensaid.org.uk.

Laura Harman
Laura Harman

Laura is a news writer for woman&home who primarily covers entertainment and celebrity news. Laura dabbles in lifestyle, royal, beauty and fashion news, and her favourite stories to cover as anything and everything to do with television and film. She is also passionate about feminism and equality and loves writing about gender issues and feminist literature.


Laura loves drinking and eating and can often be found trying to get reservations at London's trendiest restaurants. When she's not wining and dining, Laura can also be found baking, hiking with her dog, shopping, and practicing yoga.