Standing up for yourself is good – it is a sign of resistance -There is no consent to abuse Webinar – MHPN – 19 FEB 15 [18:45 to 20:00]

Standing up for yourself is good – it is a sign of resistance -There is no consent to abuse
Webinar – MHPN – 19 FEB 15 [18:45 to 20:00]

Intimate partner violence
– Women often present with symptoms such as being anxious, depressed, PTSD, alcohol and other drug symptoms, eating disorders
– Children present with symptoms such as aggression, Behavioural difficulties, bedwetting, somatisation, and all the symptoms for women above As a result of seeing parents “behaving badly” [They feel frightened, Sad, Guilty, Helpless][They need to know that violence is wrong; That violence is not an excuse for an adult to hurt them; That the adults behaviour is not their fault; That they are not alone]
[Pets can also be subject to domestic violence threats and harm]

Questions to ask:
– How are things at home?
– Do you feel safe at your home?
– What happens when you argue?
– Are you afraid of your partner?
– Are you afraid to go home?

Therapists should be:
– Confidential
– Be nonjudgemental
– Respect client wishes
– Of the clients a safe place to discuss

WHO Guidelines

Assess safety including safety plan

– To help women decide about their relationship

RACGP – the 9 r’s
– Recognise symptoms
– Respond to distress
– respect
– Reflect
– Refer appropriately
– Assess risk – safety issues including the children

Alan Wade : Violence is always about humiliation; Resistance is always about dignity

Psychological impact:
– Self-harm
– Insomnia
– Excessive dieting/eating
– Self-neglect (Medication and substance-abuse)

Cognitive impact:
– Decision-making problems
– Low self-esteem
– Exhaustion
– Concentration difficulties

Emotional impact:
– Depression
– Anxiety
– Fear
– Problems with anger/ irritability
– Impaired friendship ability
– Social isolation

Existential impact:
– Loss of autonomy
– Loss of self efficacy
– Trust deficits
– Self loathing

– Hypervigilance
– Flashbacks
– Panic
– Insomnia
-Emotional numbing
– Avoidance of triggers
– Survival-mode living

Path To recovery – The weave model
– cycle of: Achieve, believe, relieve, grieve

Cycle of violence:
– Stand-over phase
– Assault
– Pursuit phase
– False Remorse Phase
– Re-intimidation phase

Violence is never okay

Domestic violence is about experiencing abuse – it is a form of oppression

– Women need to be alert to domestic violence
– Women need to feel able to disclose
– Women need to be willing to explore

– Need to know where the man is now – whether he is waiting outside (when in therapy)
– Need to know how they respond to disclosure
– Need to demonstrate empathy, positive regard, genuineness
– Take a strengths based approach
– What has the woman done to survive?
– Remember that the woman is the expert on her life
– Conduct a risk assessment & discuss safety plan

Domestic violence inevitably involves legal processes
– It is in abuse of power
– It is an experience of trauma
– Women are blamed by their partner
– Perpetrator often uses child against woman

Client’s perspective:
– Domestic violence is desire for power & control
– It is not in anger response
– “The power control wheel” – Pets, children, money, employment [Emotional, psychological physical abuse]
– Feels like you’re walking on eggshells

Domestic violence is the leading cause of death and injury for women under 45 in Australia
– most Dangerous times is when the woman is pregnant or when she tries to leave the relationship
– One in three women have experienced physical violence since the age of 15
– One in four children witness domestic violence against mother or stepmother

interactions & responses:
– Avoid dialogue that blames and shames
– Attend to the present
– Have a future focus
– Do not minimise
– ask the victim: What is it you need it right now? How can I assist in helping you?
– Encourage them to seek support ( Legal, Domestic violence services, GP, Social worker)
– Inappropriate to say: What did you do to make him angry?
– Be aware of Mutual language – a Dispute is mutual

Mental health care plan:
– Need to get a historical context not just symptoms now

Abuses often use children as pawns
Abuses often use mental health as another weapon against their victim (as a justication for their abuse) e.g. – Take your meds, psycho etc.,

Domestic violence victims constant environment of fight/flight response system and PTSD

Legal care issues

Emergency accommodation
– First steps safety

Adolescence the Imatter app
– Interactive virtual library of articles and quizzes
– Facilitates positive conversations about relationships
– Teaches them to understand boundary Crossings
– Teaches them to recognise the difference between loving & controlling/abusive behaviour

– Standing up for yourself is good – it is a sign of resistance
-There is no consent to abuse

– Recovery is about dignity and sense of self


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