Domestic violence is more around than you would think. It’s mostly hidden or not that obvious to the outside, because it happens inside the family.
In Australia, 1 in 3 women is experiencing domestic violence and 1 in 4 children is exposed to domestic violence. And yes, it can also affect men!
Domestic Violence is NOT normal
It starts slowly and progresses in quantity and quality over time, it becomes a habit. Victims are getting to a point, where they think it is “normal behaviour” and put up with it. They accept the person for who they are, but with this, allowing them to keep hurting you and maybe also others.
There are may forms of domestic violence out there and every single one of them is not normal:
- physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Financial abuse
- Verbal abuse
- Social abuse
Domestic violence is not normal! It actually is an offence and there are laws in place that protect people from domestic violence.
The Domestic Violence cycle
Many victims stay, because the abuser promises change. Victims believe in the good and believe them when they try to make up for their “faults”. The make-up phase.
The abuser could also blame the victim for their actions, which makes them feeling guilty. They turn it around onto the victim, who think in the end “if I would have not done this he wouldn’t have done that.”
Either way the victim stays and things might start to appear better the victim thinks the abuser has finally made a positive change. The victim might feel happy for a while. This is called the Honeymoon phase.
Once the victim feels reassured, the tension starts to build up again and maybe already some small abuse is happening. The victim walks on egg shells and is aware that the next bigger incident is about to happen if she isn’t careful enough. The victim already lives in fear of the next incident.
And then bam it hits the violent phase and the incident happens – and that could have any form of abuse as already mentioned above. The victim gets hurt. The abuser might apologises, makes up for it or blames the victim who believes the abuser. And there we are at the make-up phase again. The cycle continues….
Enough is enough – you deserve better
Domestic violence should be taken seriously. No one deserves any kind of violence!
You deserve better! You deserve to live a life without fear! No one should live walking on egg shells or being afraid of communicating own feelings or opinions.
It is not the victims responsibility to look after the abuser. It’s not their responsibility to protect them by making up stories why they have been hurt.
The abusers actions are not your fault, do not blame yourself or be ashamed for staying.
All that matters is that you do get out of it!
There is lots of support out there if you decide to step up and break the silence and stop domestic violence!
Talk to your loved ones about how you feel and get all the support you need to make the right move in the right direction and turn away from the abuse!
Even if you don’t want to get the police involved there are services out there to support you.
Yes, making the right step might not be the easiest at that current moment, but it will be worth it!
- For emergencies call 000
- 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) – 24/7 domestic violence and sexual assault helpline and support for women
- Beyond Blue 1300 224 636
- Child abuse report line 131 611
- Relationship Australia 1800 182 325
- Women’s legal service helpline 1800 816 349
- Victim support service 1800 842 846
You are not alone!
I have been a victim of domestic/family violence since I was about 9 years old.
It has taken me most of my life to understand domestic violence and to finally have the courage and walk away from it. So many things make sense now looking back. It is still a long way to go for me, but I will get there.
It had almost broken me and I had become someone I didn’t even wanted to be. Once I turned away from it, I started to breathe again and started looking forward. I m becoming myself again and to be honest, I m now stronger than ever. I have made the healthiest choice of my life: saying NO to domestic violence and putting a stop to it! It is not an easy step and it will take time, but it will be worth it in the end.
I will not give someone else the power to break me! I m done pretending and hiding the fact of domestic violence! It’s out there and we shouldn’t ignore it, but start to talk about it.
That’s where it stopped for me
For me, having kids was the time it changed and I had the courage to walk away and into the right direction. It wasn’t only me who was affected by the abuse. Now, also my children would witness domestic violence or might get abused themselves. I m responsible to look after them and to protect them. They do not deserve to be treated or raised with violence around them or affecting them, and thinking it would be ok.
I want to be a role model for my children. They should be raised in a healthy environment, so they can develop the way they chose to, know how to treat another human the right way and see the difference in what is not acceptable.
If you can’t stand up for yourself, do it for your children! Be strong and be brave!
Don’t be ashamed of your story – it might inspire others!