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Early Warning Signs for Domestic Violence

By December 14, 2016No Comments

By Sharla Stevens

According to new research by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, domestic violence is now high on the list of risk factors effecting women’s health.

A charming or charismatic partner may be an early warning sign of a potential abusive relationship. Of course, this doesn’t mean that all charming people are violent or abusive but it is often a technique used by abusive people to hide their controlling behaviours. For example, at the start of the relationship it may seem wonderful for the woman to be doted upon and it may seem romantic that your partner wants to be in touch with you all the time. This can gradually turn into more controlling behaviour, though, where your partner monitors your every move and tries to control where you go and who you see.

There is usually a degree of controlling behaviour in every relationship, even healthy ones. This behaviour becomes an issue, though, when it is the overall pattern in the relationship, rather than and give-and-take type situation in healthy relationships.

It can be difficult for men to change their behaviour as it is often based on their embedded ideas about the role of women and the power of men.

Education can assist couples and Relationships Australia now run courses on healthy relationships in some high schools. Relationships Australia in Canberra provide a range of behaviour change programs and services, including

  1. Group programs for men who use violent and controlling behaviours;
  2. Women with difficulties managing anger and strong emotions;
  3. Non-violent resistance for the parents of young people exhibiting violent and abusive behaviours;
  4. RAGE – Re-navigating Anger and Guilty Emotions for adolescents;
  5. Domestic and family violence counselling for couples, individuals or family counselling.

For more information see: and .


If you need assistance with a family law matter or domestic violence matter please contact Cristina Huesch or one of our solicitors, Amanda Pickles, Sharla Stevens or Angela Li on (02) 6223 2400.


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