It was a typical week at home, with no work, no family, no stress.
But it was also a busy week for the wife and husband duo.
“There were a couple of times when it just seemed to go to hell in a handbasket,” says Lisa.
Lisa, who had recently completed her master’s degree, was the sole provider of the couple’s two children.
“There was no support at home.
We had no money, no support.
It just felt like we were stuck.”
Lily, a 30-year-old social worker from Adelaide, and husband Mark had been in an abusive relationship.
“They just had this really bad attitude.
They were really angry, they were really controlling.
They would say they were going to kill us,” says Lily.
They eventually had to move to Canberra and Lisa and Mark moved into a shared accommodation.
Lising was also unemployed and living on her own, while Mark had found work as a domestic worker.
Lisa says they were living in a room with a mattress on the floor.
Mark, who was employed as a security guard, had to live in a house full of mattresses and pillows.
The couple struggled to pay the rent, but their rent payment would not cover their bills.
Their apartment was a mess.
The fridge and coffee maker were in the kitchen and the living room had no space to move in.
Eventually, they moved in with a friend, and their home became a makeshift bed and breakfast.
Over the next few months, Lisa says her husband and Mark tried to help their friends find jobs, but Lisa says she couldn’t find a suitable job.
By December, Lisa was exhausted from dealing with the stress.
When she finally found a suitable position, it was a short one, and Lisa says that after two months she had been fired.
She had been working in an IT position, but couldn’t keep up with her bills and was eventually told she was being cut from her job.
She felt she had no choice but to seek help.
After a year of dealing with Lisa and her boyfriend, Mark left the business.
Since Lisa’s dismissal, she says she has become increasingly suicidal and depressed.
Her daughter, now a senior university lecturer, says Lisa and his boyfriend are not the same people.
“I know they are trying to get away from the violence but they are not helping themselves,” she says.
A few weeks ago, Lisa had her first major depressive episode and went to the emergency room.
On Thursday, the couple were back in court.
Before: Lisa, now 29, and her partner Mark, now 31, are appealing the decision to fire them.
During: Mark, who has been with the company for just under a year, is still unemployed.
He has been charged with breaching the Employment Act.
While Lisa is still in jail, she hopes her ordeal will make a difference.
There are many people struggling to find employment and living at home for many reasons, and they are at risk of losing their jobs or their homes.
And we don’t have any way of helping them, she argues.
I think it is time for us to be a bit more aware of what we can do to help,” she said.
We are all victims, and if we don’s, it will all be for nothing.
Victoria Police say they are investigating the case.