It is important to know that you cannot stop or control your partner’s abuse. However, you do have control to find help, support, and safety for you and your children.
If you are leaving your abuser:
- How and when can you leave most safely? Where will you go?
- Who can you trust to tell that you are leaving?
- Do you know the number to the local domestic violence shelter?
- Are you comfortable calling the police if needed?
- Talk to schools and childcare providers about who has permission to pick up the children.
- Is an Order of Protection a viable option for you?
Do you have important papers such as birth certificates, social security cards, marriage and driver’s license, car title, lease or mortgage papers, passports, insurance information, school and health records, welfare and immigration documents, and divorce or other court documents?
- Credit cards
- Money (if you have it)
- Extra set of keys
- Medications and prescriptions
- Phone numbers and addresses for family, friends, doctors, lawyers and community agencies
- Clothing and comfort items for you and children
If you are staying with your abuser:
- Think of a safe place to go if an argument occurs- avoid rooms with no exits (bathrooms) or rooms with weapons (kitchens)
- Develop a code word or sign so that children, family, neighbors, friends and co-workers know when to call for help
- Think of a safe place where you could flee to in an emergency
- Keep an extra set of keys on you at all times in case you need to escape quickly
Teach your children how to dial 9-1-1