Domestic and family violence
What is domestic and family violence
Domestic and family violence occurs when someone who has a close personal relationship with you makes you feel afraid, powerless, or unsafe. It can be physical, but can also be emotional and psychological. Non-physical forms of abuse can be just as damaging as physical assaults. If you feel disrespected, unable to be yourself, afraid to disagree, or negotiate for what you want, this may be a sign of abuse. Forms of abuse and violence can include:
- Physical harm – threats of self/physical harm, smashing things, hurting pets
- Emotional and psychological abuse – humiliation, put-downs and blaming
- Financial abuse – strict or unfair control of money
- Verbal abuse – name-calling, yelling
- Social abuse – controlling where you go and who you see
- Sexual abuse – and rape
- Stalking – following, making excessive phone calls, texts or emails
- Spiritual or cultural abuse – controlling practices or choices
If you are experiencing abuse or violence it is not your fault. It is the abuser who is responsible.
- Find supportive friends – talk to someone you trust. Do not try to cope alone.
- Contact a support group – they can offer you direct help through shared experiences.
- Make a safety plan – include emergency numbers, pack clothing/toiletries, important documents, medication etc in case you have to escape quickly.
- Contact the police – when you decide to leave – the police can be on standby when you leave to ensure your safety or if you need to return to collect possessions later on.
- See a doctor – if you are feeling anxious or depressed. Consider talking to a counsellor/psychologist about how the experience has affected you.
- Recognise your strengths – to create a more positive life. Your skills and abilities helped you leave an abusive relationship and are signs of your capability under intense pressure.
If you need immediate help call 000.
- 1800 RESPECT – National Sexual Assault, Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service 1800 737 732
- Relationships Australia 1300 364 277
- Mensline Australia 1300 789 978
Call 000 if you are in danger
Families & Children
Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander
Mental Health Services