Adolescent to parent abuse (adolescent family violence)

Adolescent-to-parent abuse is any behaviour used by a young person to control, dominate or coerce parents. It is intended to threaten and intimidate and puts family safety at risk. Whilst it is normal for adolescents to demonstrate healthy anger, conflict and frustration during their transition from childhood to adulthood, anger should not be confused with violence. Violence is about a range of behaviours, including non-physical acts, aimed at achieving on-going control over another person by instilling fear. Most abused parents have difficulty admitting even to themselves that their child is abusive. They feel ashamed, disappointed and humiliated and blame themselves for the situation which has led to this imbalance of power. There is also an element of denial where parents convince themselves that their son or daughter’s behaviour is part of normal adolescent conduct.  More info click here.

Cultural and Spiritual Abuse

Not respecting your beliefs, values or identity, running you down about your identity and culture, not letting you attend events – church, LGBTQIA+ events, important ceremonies.

Example :

Refusing to give your ex-wife the Gett (Jewish divorce)

Elder abuse

Elder abuse is any act which causes harm to an older person and is carried out by someone they know and trust such as a family member or friend. The abuse may be physical, social, financial, psychological or sexual and can include mistreatment and neglect.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is commemorated each year on 15 June to highlight one of the worst manifestations of ageism and inequality in our society, elder abuse.

Elder abuse can be defined as a single act, or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action occurring within in any relationship where there is an expectation of trust which causes harm or distress to an older person (WHO,2008).  For more information click here.

Legal Aid NSW has developed a set of short video on elder abuse. Each episode is about 16mins. It is a great resource for your in-house training. It can also be incorporated into your team meetings followed by a facilitated discussion or debrief.The links to the YouTube videos are:

Part 1. Elder abuse – what is it?

Part 2. Ageism and signs of elder abuse

Part 3. Case studies

Part 4. What to do if you suspect elder abuse

Part 5. Supporting your clients and patients – and extra resources

Webinar elder abuse :

NSW Ageing and Disability Abuse Helpline 1800 628 221

Financial abuse

Financial Abuse occurs when money is used as a means to gain power and control over another person. Financial abuse can trap people in an abusive relationship, and may also impact on their ability to stay safe if they decide to leave.

Financial abuse can be subtle, with the abuser gradually taking control over bank accounts and financial transactions; or it can be obvious, violent and threatening with the abuser forbidding their partner from working or spending their wages. It can include taking full control of all the finances, spending and decisions about money so the victim is financially dependent on their partner; denying them access to money, including their own; providing inadequate resources; using credit cards and spending without permission; and refusing to work or contribute to household expenses.  Click here for more information.


*Manipulation of income declared so that it affects child support payments
*Control of all bank accounts
*Limiting one person access to funds

Physical assault

Physical abuse is when a person uses physical force or violence against another person. Physical abuse can include pushing, shoving, hitting, punching, slapping or shaking; kicking; hair-pulling; spitting or biting; punching; attempted strangulation, driving dangerously; sleep and food deprivation and/or abuse of children or pets. It can also include threats to destroy or actually destroying possessions.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse is any form of forced or unwanted sexual activity. This can include rape; unwanted touching; forcing a partner to perform sexual acts; unwanted exposure to pornography; forced sex without protection etc. It also includes (although less commonly recognised), withholding sex as a form of punishment. The perpetrator uses sex as a means of control and manipulation, and to coerce compliance

Forcing sex, touching in a sexual way without permission,

Manipulation and pressure to make someone engage in sexual behaviour or refusing to engage in sexual behavior.


  • Forcing your wife to have sex with you or perform sexual acts
  • Coercing your girlfriend to have sex with you without a clear YES for consent.
  • Video or taking sexual images without consent and/or using them to intimidate and control another person.

Verbal Abuse

Verbal abuse is when words are used as a weapon to cause significant damage. It is a key feature of emotionally abusive relationships and can lead to physical violence.

Some of the signs can include: name calling; continuous criticism; yelling, insulting or swearing; telling a partner what to wear; preventing a partner from seeing their friends and/or family; blaming a partner for the problems in the relationship; comparing a partner to others to undermine their self-esteem and self-worth; making a partner feel guilty; intimidating; and threatening suicide.