Once the warning signs of abuse are recognized, friends, families or associates may want to help the victim of abuse in any way they can. It is a big step to want to help a victim, as you may be putting yourself in danger as well. Raising awareness on women abuse is an ongoing task. If you can help even one victim, all the efforts put into educating and making people aware of domestic abuse is well worth it.
Following is a short list on ways to support the victim once the warning signs are recognized:
If she denies the abuse:
Assure her she can talk to you any time.
Don’t become angry or frustrated with her decisions. It is mportant to understand that she may be afraid or not ready to take the
Try to understand why she might be having difficulty getting help. She may feel ashamed.
Offer to go with her if she needs additional information or support.
If she has children, let her know gently that you are concerned about her and her children’safety and emotional well-being. She may be more willing to recognize her situation if she recognizes her children may also be in danger.
Talk to her about what you see and assure her that you are concerned. Tell her you believe her and that it is not her fault.
Encourage her not to confront her partner if she is planning to leave. Her safety must be protected.
Offer to provide childcare while she seeks help.
Offer your home as a safe haven to her, her children and pets. If she accepts your offer, do not let her partner in.
Encourage her to pack a small bag with important items and keep it stored at your home in case she needs it.
Know that you or she can call the Assaulted Women’s Helpline, your local shelter, or, in an emergency, the police.