What is family violence?
Family violence occurs between people who are related to one another through blood, marriage or de facto partnerships, adoption and fostering relationships, sibling and extended family relationships. It includes the range of kinship ties in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, extended family relationships, and family within communities of people with diverse sexualities, gender identities and those with intersex variations. It also includes people reliant on care or living in the same house.
In both situations, perpetrators use a pattern of behaviours to maintain power and control over the other person, commonly referred to as coercive control. The impact of the abusive behaviours causes the victim/survivor to live in fear and restricts their freedom. These behaviours can include physical harm, sexual violence, threats and intimidation, verbal abuse, emotional abuse, financial abuse, psychological abuse, social isolation, technology-facilitated abuse/control, cultural and religious abuse and preventing the other from doing what they wish or forcing them to behave in ways they do not want.
Many of these different forms coercive control can be occurring at any one time within the same relationship.