If Your Partner is Hurting, Threatening or Abusing You…
If you’re experiencing domestic violence, prepare a safety plan now in case you and your children need to leave in a hurry. Call 911 if you’re in immediate danger, and teach your children how to call 911 in an emergency.
If You Are Currently in the Relationship
- Talk to someone you trust. Ask for help in case you need to leave.
- Use the resources provided on this website. You can get help in planning ways to stay safe.
- Protect yourself when you’re researching resources online. Use a computer that the abuser can’t access. Visit www.nnedv.org for more Internet safety tips.
- Pack a bag that won’t be missed. Hide or keep it with someone you trust. Pack it with the following items:
- cash (including coins for phone calls) and checks
- clothes and personal items for you and your children
- house and car keys
- important phone numbers
- copies of important papers, including your driver’s license or another picture ID, birth certificates, passports, health insurance information, house and car titles, rent receipts, marriage license, and your children’s immunization records
- special toy or book for your children
- Plan where you will go and how you will get there. Remember you might have to leave in the middle of the night.
If You’ve Left the Relationship
- Change your phone number and screen calls.
- Save and document all contacts, messages, injuries, or other incidents involving the abuser.
- Change the locks if the abuser has a key.
- Plan how to get away if confronted by the abuser.
- If you have to meet your partner, do it in public.
- Notify school and work contacts.
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If Someone You Know is Being Abused…
If you think your friend is in an abusive relationship, don’t downplay the danger or judge your friend’s choices. Your friend may feel that he or she has nowhere to go or that it’s his or her fault. You can help by giving emotional support and expressing concern for your friend’s safety. Help your friend find the local organization that can provide help. If you don’t know it, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. If you think an assault is occurring, call 911. For more guidance, visit womenshealth.gov.
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If You Are Hurting (or afraid you might hurt) Your Partner…
It is OK to ask for help if you are hurting someone you love. If you are ready to make a change, help is available. For treatment options, talk to a counselor at the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or visit ndvh.org.