Domestic and family violence
- Domestic and family violence happens when one person in a relationship hurts another or makes them feel unsafe
- It can happen in any kind of relationship — not just with husbands and wives or boyfriends and girlfriends (intimate partners)
- Abuse doesn’t have to involve hurt to your body, or physical violence, to be domestic or family violence
- If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic or family violence, you can contact 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or through online chat
Who is affected by domestic and family violence?
Domestic and family violence can happen to anyone — that is, a person from any country, religion, sexuality, gender, social background or culture.
It can also happen in any relationship, including with:
- Boyfriends, girlfriends, partners, husbands or wives
- Ex-boyfriends, ex-girlfriends, ex-partners, ex-husbands or ex-wives
- Carers or paid support workers
- Parents, guardians or other family members
- Adult children
- Other people you live with or see often, whether inside or outside the home
None of these people has the right to hurt you or make you live in fear.
What does domestic and family violence involve?
Domestic and family violence can involve behaviour that:
- Is violent, which can, but does not have to be physical. Violent behaviour can include:
- Sexual violence
- Physical violence
- Psychological or emotional violence
- Financial violence
- Spiritual violence
- Social violence
- Legal violence
- Reproductive violence
- Causes fear
- Stops you from living as you want
- Forces you to behave in ways you don’t want
People who use this kind of violence are sometimes called ‘perpetrators of violence’.