No Words


The tragedy that has unfolded in Brisbane over the past few days leaves me numb and unable to find words to describe what has happened. 

Not being able to find the right words is something new to me, I can usually (sometimes after an appropriate period of rumination) find those words.  I can’t. 

I’m a father of three daughters and I cannot fathom the actions of this man (I’m not going to give him the satisfaction of mentioning his name).

As a specialist family lawyer for the last 17 years, I see and deal with issues of family violence on almost a daily basis.  I have experienced the situation on both sides of the coin, acting for both victims of domestic violence and the perpetrators of domestic violence. 

Some people accept assistance when they are both victims and perpetrators.  Some perpetrators use the system to inflict more harm on victims.  It’s time for practitioners to consider whether they have a bigger role to play in terms of the system. 

Good men need to show leadership.  Good men need to lead by example.  Good practitioners, both men and women, need to recognise that we should not be enabling people to use the system to ulterior means or use domestic violence orders as bargaining tools. 

I had exceptional male role models in my life that taught me how to behave.  It’s time I do like wise.  My daughters will know that this sort of behaviour is wrong.  Those around them will also know that this type of abhorrent behaviour has no place in our contemporary society.

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