Date of Submission:11th June, 2003
"Challenging DOMESTIC VIOLENCE is often difficult but complicity is unforgivable"
Domestic Violence is an abuse of power perpetrated mainly, but not only, by men against women in a relationship or after separation.
Domestic Violence affects the entire community and it occurs in all areas of society regardless of geographic location, socio-economic status, age, culture or religion.
The most commonly acknowledged forms are physical, sexual, threats, intimidation, emotional, social, economic.
Many people believe that "if a woman doesn't like "it" - leave -
it is not that simple - A less common question is :
"WHY DOESN'T HE STOP THE VIOLENCE?"
The aim of this project is to speak about domestic violence and the difficulty victims have "breaking away" from a situation that is obviously detrimental to themselves, their children and community at large. Leaving seems the obvious step, even to the victim, but the "addiction" to the perpetrator can be overwhelming and the strength required for the victim to "turn her life around" and "take control" is enormous.
How does she "empower herself"? Where does she "find the strength"? The struggle is "moment to moment" and needs a positive, encouraging, support network.
Domestic violence is a grave and complex problem which has no easy solution. The affects of domestic violence do not stop when the cuts and bruises heal. The psychological affects can be seen long after the violence has stopped.
It is difficult to know the extent of domestic violence because of the hidden nature of the problem. Domestic violence is the most common form of assault in Australia. American studies indicate that 1 in 3 women in an intimate relationship are likely to experience some form of domestic violence in their lifetime.
A sad indictment for our society today...