What is Domestic & Family Violence (DFV)?

What is Domestic & Family Violence (DFV)?

DFV is deliberate behaviour where a perpetrator uses coercion and control to intimate and cause fear to a victim.

DFV is categorised as: • Physical abuse • Emotional abuse • Financial abuse • Verbal abuse • Spiritual and cultural abuse • Sexual abuse • Animal abuse • Stalking • Using technology to abuse • Non- Fatal Strangulation Isolation • Reproduction coercion  Post separation violence • Spousal & Family Homicide

For women from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse backgrounds DFV may include Forced Marriage ,Dowry Abuse, Female Genital Cutting, and Honour killing.

For people  from Gay, Lesbian, bisexual, Trans, Intersex and Queer communities it may also include ‘outing ‘forcing or hindering transitioning.

 DFV is not a series of isolated incidents or a result of a momentary loss of control, it is a deliberate pattern of behaviour.

The perpetrator is not Out of Control, but they Take Control.

Perpetrators anticipate that their victim will resist violence & abuse, therefore they take deliberate steps to suppress the victim’s resistance.

Victim’s Always Resist Violence & Abuse

Whenever people are abused, they do many things to oppose the abuse and keep their dignity and self-respect, this is called Resistance.

Open defiance is not a safe expression of resistance, so most victims tend to use small and subtle actions (that often go unnoticed) to resist violence & abuse.

A victim’s resistance might include: not doing what the perpetrator wants; standing up/speaking out against the perpetrator; trying to stop the violence; imagining a better life.

Social Responses are the reactions of family, friends, service providers and government departments to a victims disclosure of violence. When a victim reveals incidences of violence, and has a:

• Positive Social Response (believed, supported and not judged) they tend to recover more quickly and fully, are more likely to work with authorities & report further violence in the future.

• Negative Social Responses (not believed questioned about their involvement, not supported and judged) they are more likely to receive a diagnosis of a mental disorder, less likely to cooperate with authorities and disclose violence again.