Jay-Jay shares her family's difficult experience with domestic violence

Jay-Jay & Flynny 14/06/2022
Trigger warning: the following article and video mentions domestic abuse and violence.
 
This week is Shine's annual appeal, where they want Kiwis to 'Light It Orange' - whether that's dressing up in orange, decorating your space orange, or having an orange themed party to help fundraise for an uncomfortable cause.
 
One in three New Zealand women have been physically or sexually abused by a partner and a child is killed by a family member every five and a half weeks. The statistics are shocking, but for Jay-Jay, she shared on the Jay-Jay & Flynny show that domestic violence was very real to her.
 
You probably wouldn't guess by looking at me or even seeing how my life looks today. But when I was a child, I endured about seven years of domestic violence.
 
Jay-Jay, who was only a child at the time, would watch her mum's boyfriend at the time take his anger out on her mum Robynne, and would try to shelter her younger sister from the abuse.
 
"My sister and I were really young and we would have to get out of the way and hide and we would just have to listen to Mum being attacked by this monster."
 
"Her screaming for help and the noise of the walls and cupboards being punched and kicked in. And we were just so scared that he would also come after us. Which he did sometimes. And my mum was a really young mother and he controlled her. So she she felt helpless."
 
He had absolutely manipulated her mind and she felt like that she couldn't cope alone.
After years of trying to escape to a friend's home or government safe houses, Jay-Jay's mum finally left him for good when Jay-Jay was 11 years old. But despite it being decades ago, the memories don't leave Jay-Jay's mind.
 
"Now I'm telling you this because people often imagine what they think a victim of domestic violence looks like or lives like. And you're so wrong. And when a woman reaches out to a place like Shine for help, she is so desperate by then. She's ashamed and she's scared. And she really has no place else to go. When this happened in my life, it was about it was the late seventies and eighties. And I just cannot believe that this is still a problem."
 
"This is New Zealand. We are supposed to be the safest country in the world. The most friendly people, the most laidback people. We can't turn a blind eye to this. And there's a serious problem in New Zealand and we need to help each other."
 
So if you can support Shine and all of our sisters who are living in fear, please do so.
 
Where to find help and support: