It’s important to call out abusive behavior when you notice it but talking about it with your friends isn’t always easy.
People who perpetrate domestic and family violence can be very good at presenting themselves in a positive way in public. This can be part of the pattern of abusive behaviour.
Here are some ways you can help your family member or friend:
Take their fears seriously.
Violence is never ok. Don’t blame the person or minimise the abuser’s responsibility for the abuse.
There are many barriers, difficult choices and often well-founded fears and concerns involved in leaving a violent partner – including an escalation in violence, homelessness and poverty. The victim/survivor may not be ready or it may not be safe to leave.
Remember that domestic and family violence involves more than the physical acts of abuse. Perpetrators target self-confidence through derogatory words and emotional abuse and try to ‘grind down’ the people they abuse. Recognise the strengths and resilience that have kept them and their children safe.
Help sort through options to get safe, whether leaving or staying with the abuser. See the safety planning page.
Help in practical ways – with transport, appointments, child minding, or a place to escape to. Find out about domestic and family violence services and offer to help with making an appointment.
Witnessing violence impacts on the whole family. If there are children involved, give them a sense of your care and support and seek appropriate help for them through a child or family support service.
Remember, domestic and family violence can be dangerous. Ring 000 if your family member, friend or their children are being harmed, or you are frightened they are about to be attacked. #whiteribbon #svsgsydney #educateandempower #domesticviolenceawareness #domesticviolenceprevention #voiceforthevoiceless