Domestic and family violence (DFV) is behaviour that is threatening, abusive, violent, coercive or controlling; causing a person to live in fear and to be made to do things against their will. It can be perpetrated by a current or former intimate partner, a family member, other member of the household, or member of the extended family or kinship group.
It can be hard to tell if someone is experiencing domestic and family violence; they may not want you to know, or it may not be safe to talk with you.
DFV is often a pattern of coercive and controlling behaviours that could include:
- Emotional or psychological abuse such as verbal abuse, threats of violence, isolation, and undermining the victim’s sense of reality.
- Physical violence such as physical assault, non-fatal strangulation, and damage or harm to person, pets and property.
- Economic abuse such as denying a person reasonable financial autonomy or financial support - or accruing debt in their name.
- Sexualised violence such as sexualised assault and other abusive or coercive behaviour of a sexualised nature.
- Reproductive coercion or abuse. When a person is stopped from making their own choices about reproduction.
- Stalking and intimidation such as surveillance and harassment.
- Technology facilitated abuse whereby a perpetrator uses electronic devices and online services to monitor, control, threaten, harass or abuse a person.
- Systems abuse. Using services and systems to harm and control victims and/or incur costs.
- Spiritual or religious abuse in which spiritual or religious beliefs are used to scare, hurt or control a person.
Source: Insight Exchange (DVSM)