1 in 6 women affected by domestic abuse
On average, one woman a week is murdered by her current or former partner. It’s not just women though, every month, one man is murdered by his current or former partner.
Although domestic violence is widely acknowledged as gendered violence, with statistics demonstrating women are far more likely to experience domestic violence than men, both men and women experience this abuse. Domestic violence does not discriminate, it happens to all genders, all ages, all ethnicities, all religions, all ability levels, as well as all heterosexual relationships, all same-sex couples relationships and all other intimate relationships that exist within the LGBTIQ+ community.
In a respectful partnership, arguments or disagreements will occur, but both partners feel free to state their opinions, make their own decisions and feel safe to say no to sex. In an abusive relationship, one partner controls the other through physical harm, criticisms, demands, threats, or sexual pressure.
Domestic violence is any behaviour used to exert power and control over a person through fear. This is not always physical, it also includes psychological/emotional abuse, financial abuse, social isolation, stalking, verbal abuse, damage to personal property, digital/technological abuse, spiritual/cultural abuse, sexual abuse and physical abuse.
The statistics speak for themselves, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics one in six women and one in 16 men in Australia have experienced physical or sexual violence from a current or previous intimate partner. That means there is someone in your circle of family and friends who is experiencing domestic and family violence and you may not know it.
Would you know what to do if a family or friend told you they were in an abusive relationship?
Would you notice the signs that a family or friend may be experiencing domestic abuse? The below tips might help you identify some behaviours.
- You notice changes in their behaviour, or the behaviour of their children.
- They appear frightened or anxious.
- They seem afraid or nervous around their partner, or need to constantly ‘keep the peace’.
- They may have unlikely injuries or bruises or is often ‘not well’ or having ‘silly accidents’.
- They may miss work or cancel arrangements with short notice or vague excuses.
- Their partner controls all aspects of their life: – finances, friends, work and social life.
- Their partner may also be overly possessive or jealous.
- Their children seem fearful or on edge in their abusers company or at the mention of their name.
- It can be hard to know what to do for the best, and often people are reticent to bring up what is often thought to be a very ‘private, family or intimate’ matter.
If you, or someone you know is experiencing domestic, family or sexual violence, DVConnect can help you find a pathway to safety, away from violence. The DVConnect helplines are:
- Womensline 1800 811 811, available 24/7
- Mensline 1800 600 636 available from 9am – midnight, 7 days
- Sexual Assault Helpline 1800 010 120, available from 7.30am – 11.30pm, 7 days.
- For more visit www.DVConnect.org.
For more, contact