Why are we talking about domestic violence on a website for people with drug and alcohol issues?
It has long been understood that in order to help someone who has a substance use problem it is necessary to look at everything in their life that might be causing them difficulties. Someone might be struggling with debt, have problems with work, difficulties with housing or their children, or they might have a problem with domestic violence.
Is it that common?
Perhaps it is better to say that it is not as uncommon as one might like. Around 70% of all violence between people in their own home takes place when one or both of them have been drinking for example. For better or worse, such things can take place when people are having a hard time. The important thing is that there is help available for people in this situation.
At a drug and alcohol treatment service?
Absolutely. All the services in the tri-borough area will have at least one member of staff who has experience of dealing with such issues, and who will be trained to help you examine the best ways of dealing with such a difficult problem. After all, if you are suffering from domestic violence it is unlikely that you will be able to deal with your drink or drug problem without tackling that at the same time.
My keyworker can definitely help?
To quote a television advert if they can’t they ‘know a man who can!’ There are specialist agencies across the tri-borough who can offer a range of services to help someone who is suffering from domestic violence. These can involve counselling, one-to-one work and a variety of groups. You key-worker can easily refer you to such an agency.
Is the group work gender specific?
By and large, yes. Clearly it makes no sense to have a group for women suffering from domestic violence from their male partners if there are men in the group. However, it is worth bearing in mind that domestic violence takes many forms. It is not uncommon for such acts to take place between men and men in a gay relationship; nor is it unknown for men to suffer violence from women.
What happens in these cases?
As with all drug and alcohol services great attention is paid to an individual’s need and circumstances, and the help that is provided is tailored to meet those needs as much as is humanly possible. It is quite astonishing sometimes to discover the range of help and support that is available for all sorts of situations. It is no different when dealing with the domestic violence. The importance thing is to know that it is not regarded as a bad or exceptional thing by staff working in drug and alcohol services, and that there is a lot that can be done to help.