A BRAVE domestic abuse survivor has hailed new laws to hold perpetrators accountable as ‘a long time coming’ after branding her emotional abuse as ‘soul destroying’.

Sarah Jane Creevy Mcdonald escaped a horrific relationship which put her through 10 years of hell.

Now she is applauding new laws which aim to tackle mental abuse, like gas lighting, as well as physical abuse.

The groundbreaking legislation will criminalises= psychological domestic abuse and coercive and controlling behaviour. An awareness campaign to increase the public ’s understanding of the wide-ranging nature of Victim welcomes changes as law against emotional abuse comes in domestic abuse and to encourage victims of abuse to seek help has also been launched.

Sarah Jane, who stayed in Ayr and was once forced to use an Ayr refuge, said she wishes the law had been introduced years ago and thinks it will make a massive difference to victims.

She had her bones snapped and face ‘smashed to a pulp’ but says the mental abuse was sometimes even worse.

Sarah Jane said: “Sometimes I would honestly rather a slap than the mental abuse.

“They tell you that you are thick and stupid and it means you can’t think for yourself and star t to believe it. That kind of stuff sticks in your head. It really does. The things he would say to me made me feel so awful.

“He was so controlling as well, one time after a night out with friends he forced me to let him check my underwear. There was a lot of jealousy issues.

“These kind of laws would really have helped me if they were out when I was suffering. They will make other people come forward and realise they are being abused, both men and women.

“I really think this is a tremendous move forward, I hope it makes others realise they don’t have to put up with a buse .

Emotional abuse needs to be taken just as seriously as physical abuse.

“Emotional abuse is soul destroying and can leave scars I totally agree with the new laws and for any kind of abuse as it’s zero tolerance.”

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said:“The Domestic Abuse Act makes absolutely clear that coercive and controlling behaviour is domestic abuse and a crime. I am proud Scotland is leading the way with this groundbreaking legislation, which uniquely recognises the effect of domestic abuse on child victims as well as adults.”

Chief Executive of Scottish Women’s Aid, Dr Marsha Scott, said: “At Scottish Women’s Aid we think this new law has the power to transform Scotland . Coercive and controlling behaviour, forms of psychological and emotional violence women and children have told us for years are the most traumatic, are a crime.”