I often feel uncertain and afraid of my partner.
I’m walking on eggshells waiting for things to blow up around me.
Every time he hits me he says it will never happen again but it does.
You are not alone
Does this sound familiar?
- I am frightened of my partner’s temper.
- I find myself doing whatever my partner wants because I am afraid of what might happen otherwise.
- I have been hit, kicked, shoved, or had things thrown at me by my partner when they were jealous or angry.
- I make decisions about activities and friends according to what my partner wants or might react.
- I drink or use drugs to dull the pain or join my partner so they won’t get mad.
- I have less contact with family and friends as my relationship has continued.
- My partner forces me into sexual acts that make me uncomfortable or afraid.
- My partner puts me down in private or in front of other people.
- My partner always want to know where I am and what I’m doing.
- I feel like my partners expectations are constantly changing and that I never seem to get things right.
- My children tell me they are, or seem uncomfortable or afraid of my partner.
- My partner threatens to have me locked up for being crazy.
- My partner always has the final say over the family finances and expect me to report and justify all that I spend.
This is domestic violence and it is unacceptable!
You have a right to be safe
Am I experiencing violence?
The Build-up – It’s like walking on eggshells! Nothing you do is good enough, and threats of violence or abuse are made. Tension builds up and you try to be the peacemaker at home making sure everyone in the household does the right thing to smooth it over.
The Crisis – the abusive behaviour explodes and your partner attacks. It becomes an extremely dangerous and violent situation. E.g. Something happens and you know you’re not safe.
The Remorse – your partner feels sorry for his behaviour and tries to explain, make excuses or even apologise. You feel like you have to offer support and forgiveness and you might take on some responsibility for the abuse. Sometimes he doesn’t feel sorry for the hurt he has caused, he just quietens down for a while.
The Honeymoon – There might be a time when everything is fine again and your partner might even be extra caring and attentive, promising they will get help and that it will never happen again.
If you recognise some or all of this pattern happening in your relationship then you are experiencing domestic violence. No matter how much love exists in a relationship, violence and abuse are never acceptable and will have an impact on you, your children and the rest of your life.
What can I do?
If you are ever in immediate danger call the police on 000. Don’t hesitate!
Who can help me?
If you need to talk to someone about domestic or family violence:
- After hours counselling support
1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732)
- Southern Adelaide Domestic Violence Service
(08) 8382 0066
- Ninko Kurtangga Patpangga
Southern Regional Aboriginal Family Violence Service
(08) 8297 9644
You can also ask for help from your GP, Centrelink social worker or any other place you trust such as a Community Centre or Children’s Centre. Click here for information on people who can help.
If you want to leave a situation of domestic or family violence and have nowhere to go you can contact DV Gateway (1800 800 098). The Gateway will offer support, assess your situation and work with you to find alternative accommodation in a safe area. If you are ringing after 5pm or on the weekend you will reach the Homelessness Gateway and you need to say that you are experiencing domestic violence and you are not safe in your home. They will help you get the help you need. Contact the police (000) for help and protection for yourself and your children to remove the perpetrator or leave a situation.
Support for me
THIS IS NOT TRUE. No one need live in FEAR.
Find people who will help support you and will be able to remind you of why you have chosen to leave or end the relationship. Get them to regularly ask you questions like:
- ’What would you gain by going back into the relationship?’
- ‘How do you think things will have changed if you go back?’
- ‘What will it mean for the safety of you and your children if you go back?’
Remember, nobody has the right to hurt you or your children.
Call 1800 RESPECT to access telephone/online counselling
What about my children?
For advice on how to manage the legal and financial impacts of leaving a violent relationship and to find out more about your rights and where you can get help here.