You have the right to feel safe all the time, and it is not OK for a parent to hit you. It is very important to talk to someone and get help - but make sure you do so in a way that will keep you safe.

If you are being abused you should talk to an adult you trust, like a close friend, your doctor, School Based Youth Health Nurse, Guidance Officer or a teacher. People like teachers, doctors and police are ‘mandatory reporters’ and are required by law to make a report if they think you are experiencing, or are at risk of experiencing abuse.

If you are in immediate danger of being hurt or abused, do not hesitate to call the police on 000 and if you can, try to go to a secure place like to a trusted family friend, your school, a police station, or a medical centre.

There are also several telephone services that can give you support and advice about violence and abuse.

  • Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800: This is a service for people between 5 and 25 years of age and they are available 24 hours. There is also lots of information on their website, along with web-based chat - www.kidshelpline.com.au
  • Family and Child Connect on 13 32 64 – This is a Queensland based service that is there to provide free, unlimited and confidential advice, and can help you to make a confidential report if you choose to do so.

Finally, well done for choosing to speak up and ask this question. It is not at all easy to talk about family violence, and it took a lot of courage to submit this question. Please stay safe, and we wish you all the best.

~ Bonnie

Abuse is a learned behaviour. Sometimes people see it growing up. Other times they learn it from friends or popular culture. But, no matter where it's learned, it's not ok and it's never justified. Many people experience or witness abuse growing up and decide not to use those negative and hurtful ways of behaving. It's important to know that being abusive is a choice - and it’s not one that you have to make. Likewise, if you’re concerned that you may be abused because you witnessed abuse growing up, it’s important to learn about respectful relationships, the early warning signs of intimate partner violence, and develop a healthy self esteem and self respect. If you grew up in a violent home you may want to talk to a counsellor to help you sort through your feelings.

Male partners can be the victims of abuse in relationships. This is true for both heterosexual and homosexual relationships. However, it’s important to note that in at least 95% of cases, it is the male partner who is the abuser.

Breaking up with an abusive partner can be very different from breaking up with someone who isn’t abusive. Because abusers believe that they are entitled to control you, they may not let you break up with them. If you’re considering breaking up with an abusive partner it’s important to talk it though with an adult you trust. You may want to fill out a safety plan to help you stay safe. You will need to be prepared for your abuser trying to ‘win you back’. Writing a list of all the reasons why you weren’t happy in the relationship may help you stay strong.

 

Click here to download a PDF factsheet.