We live in an age of statistics- whether it's football or cricket or the weather, somebody always has some numbers they have to throw into the conversation.
Maybe you get bored with numbers. Here is a statistic to make your hair curl.
23% of all women (that's nearly one in four) who are now in a relationship have experienced domestic violence in the current relationship. That must mean that 23% of all men in a relationship have committed some violent act against their partner.
So, think about your neighbours, the ones either side and the one behind. Of those happy families, including your own, at least one (on average) of those men has at some time hit, beaten, punched, kicked or otherwise hurt that partner.
Maybe it's you.
Maybe it's happening now.
That is appalling.
We live in a society that has lost the meaning of the word “respect.”
We don't respect other people enough to know that there are boundaries to what we should say and do to others.
We don't respect ourselves to know that we should stay within those boundaries.
The family home should be a place of refuge from the world, a place of peace and harmony. Sure, all families have disagreements, sometimes very heated arguments. But violence and emotional abuse should never be a part of the equation.
This is not a “women's issue”. This is a “people issue.” It affects all of us. We all have a duty to protect those who are vulnerable.
If you're a man and you are tempted to hit out at your wife or kids in anger you need to talk to someone- perhaps a minister or a counsellor.
If you're a woman and you've been through this you might want to talk to someone too. Perhaps you need help to work through the mixed up emotions you feel. Perhaps you need help to stop it happening. There are agencies in Narrabri which can help, including The Cottage (Ph. 67924423) which provides support and emergency accommodation to women and their families.
The other 77% of us need to send a message to the rest that domestic violence is not acceptable in Narrabri Shire. On Saturday December 3 there will be a “Walk” down Maitland St to promote “Stop Domestic Violence Day:”
I think it would be great if people from all backgrounds- men, women, children, farmers, teachers, tradespeople, Australian or overseas-born- united in this opportunity to protest against all forms of violence in the home.
Join the walk and let those men and women in violent relationships know that it MUST stop.