Resources and Information

We have provided key and common resources that may help understand or provide insight into the services we provide.

Please contact us for any additional information or support.

It is a pattern of abusive behaviour whereby a person seeks to control and dominate another person.

Domestic/family violence does not take the form of a single incident. It is ongoing behaviour that gradually undermines the victim’s confidence. The severity and frequency of violence often escalates over time.


Domestic/family violence is complex.

We know from international evidence that the major cause is inequality between women and men – that is, the unequal distribution of power, resources and opportunities. Stereotypical ideas about the roles of women and men in society and the way they should behave fosters an environment for violence against women to occur.



Read about what is a healthy relationship and how it feels to be in one.


Myth: Domestic violence is a lower class phenomenon.

Fact: Australian studies indicate that domestic violence occurs across all socio-economic and ethnic groups.

Myth: You’re crazy when you have a different opinion to your partner.

Fact: Gaslighting is a type of domestic/family violence, just like physical and emotional abuse are types of domestic/family violence. Gaslighting is a form of coercive control, where an abuser emotionally and psychologically manipulates and exerts control over someone (see ‘Gaslighting’ factsheet).

Myth: Alcohol or drugs cause domestic violence.

Fact: Alcohol use, drug use and stress do not cause domestic violence; they may go along with domestic violence, but they do not cause the violence. Abusers often use these excuses for their violence. Generally domestic violence happens when an abuser has learned to choose to abuse.

Myth: Domestic violence only happens between a husband and wife.

Fact: Domestic violence can occur in any spousal relationship, including same sex relationships.

Myth: Domestic violence is a family problem and you shouldn’t interfere.

Fact: This myth keeps the silence surrounding domestic violence and prevents women from getting support. The violence is the perpetrator’s responsibility but economically and socially, domestic violence is everyone’s responsibility to change attitudes within society that support and condone it.

Myth: Women provoke the violence or they deserve it.

Fact: There is no excuse for violence and many women report being hit from behind with no warning. No one deserves abuse regardless of attempted reasoning.

Myth: Women who are in a violent relationship must be neurotic or like it, otherwise they would leave.

Fact: Women and children should not have to leave, it is the abusers who should leave, however this rarely happens. The abuser usually does not accept that he has done wrong and should therefore not have to leave. There are many factors that prevent women leaving if she is forced to; many women have dependent children and have a lack of financial resources to be able to afford to leave. Partners can threaten the woman, children, relatives or even family pets if she tries to leave.

Myth: Abusers cannot control their abusive behaviour.

Fact: Abusers deliberately use violence to control their partners. For example, most victims state that their partner hits them in places where bruises will not show. Similarly, most abusers do not assault their work-mates or other people – only their partner. This suggests that perpetrators are very much in control, choosing whom they will be abusive to, where, and how.

Myth: Men who are violent towards their partners have a mental illness.

Fact: Domestic violence is rarely caused by mental illness, but this is often used as an excuse.

Myth: Violent relationships will get better.

Fact: Violent and abusive relationships are resistant to change and rarely improve. If no action is taken they usually get worse. The violence and abuse becomes more frequent and severe and in some cases leads to permanent injury and death. Abusers often do not recognise the violence and abuse as their problem and are unconcerned about the effect of their behaviour on others.