Domestic and family violence – make the call!
Domestic and family violence occurs when one person in a relationship uses violence or abuse to maintain power and control over the other person.
Abuse is not always physical—it can be emotional, verbal, sexual, financial, or other controlling behaviours that cause the person being abused to live in fear.
Domestic and family violence occurs among people of all ages, education, cultural and racial groups, sexuality and socioeconomic status. It can occur between people in spousal, intimate personal, family or informal care relationships.
While men can be victims of domestic and family violence, the majority of people who experience this kind of violence are women.
Every year people die from domestic and family violence—even when there has been no history of physical violence. All forms of violence and controlling and obsessive behaviours should be taken seriously.
Helping yourself: Living with an abusive or violent partner is frightening and stressful. You may be hopeful that their behaviour will change—or you may be afraid of what your partner will do to you or your children if you try to leave. You may be confused, hesitant and frightened—sometimes, you may desperately want to get away, and other times, you may want to hang on to the relationship.
It is important to seek professional advice if you are currently experiencing domestic and family violence in your relationship, or if you have recently separated from a partner and you are concerned for your safety and the safety of your children.
A counsellor can help you work through your options, including applying for a Domestic Violence Order. DVConnect Womensline counsellors are available 24 hours a day on 1800 811 811, and can also refer you to a women’s refuge if you require safe emergency accommodation.
In an emergency situation, always call the police on 000 (triple zero).
Further information about housing options—whether you decide to remain in your home or leave—is available.
If you are planning on leaving an abusive relationship, click on this titled link for steps may help you to prepare.
Children’s exposure to domestic and family violence in the home can severely affect their wellbeing. There are things you can do to help your children. Click on this titled link for steps.
People may remain in abusive relationships because they are concerned about the wellbeing of their pets. There are services available that can provide temporary care. Click on this titled link for steps.
Helping others: Friends and family of people in violent or abusive relationships often have an intuitive sense that something is wrong or may have noticed a change in the person’s normal behaviour. If you suspect something isn’t quite right, act upon your instincts. Don’t wait until it’s too late!
Domestic and family violence can have serious, sometimes fatal consequences, and it is important to seek expert advice if you think someone you know is being abused. If someone feels supported by the people around them, they are more likely to take action to remove themselves and their children from a violent situation.
The signs of domestic and family violence may not be obvious to an observer, but it is important to be alert to the signs of abuse and trust your instincts. Click on this titled link for steps.
Your act of support may be the catalyst for your friend or family member to begin the process of accessing help. Click on this titled link for steps.
Domestic and family violence can be a workplace issue. Safety planning can help protect the person experiencing the domestic violence and their co-workers. Click on this titled link for steps.
You can make a difference if someone you know—a friend, family member, colleague or neighbour—is using violent and controlling behaviour. Click on this titled link for steps.
- DVConnect Womensline 1800 811 811
(Queensland) 24 hours, 7 days a week
- DVConnect Mensline 1800 600 636
(Queensland) 9am–12 midnight, 7 days a week
- In an emergency call the police on 000 (triple zero)
- 1800 RESPECT – 1800 737 732
(Australia) 24 hours, 7 days a week
- Kids helpline 1800 551 800
(Australia) 24 hours, 7 days a week
- Elder Abuse Helpline 9am–5pm, Monday to Friday
- 1300 651 192 (Queensland only)
- 07 3867 2525 (rest of Australia)
For more information go to: