How can I help a someone I know who is experiencing domestic abuse?
Some basic steps you can take are:
- Make sure they are safe – this is the number one priority
- Be understanding. Acknowledge that it takes strength to trust someone enough to talk about the abuse & that there are many people in this situation. Allow them time and if they don’t feel ready, don’t push them to giving details.
- Do not criticise the abuser, as this could put the person off telling you any more information.
- Be supportive and listen & encourage them to express their hurt and anger.
- Let them make their own decisions, if they are not ready to leave their relationship yet then that is their decision.
- Give them information on help that is available to them. Look through the options together and when they are ready, go with them to the police or solicitor.
- Help them to make a crisis plan to enable them to leave the relationship – see the ‘Leaving Safely‘ page for advice.
- Don’t encourage them to make plans they are not sure about and let them decide what is safe for them and what is not.
- Offer the use of your address and phone number so they can safely receive messages & information.
- Do not put yourself in danger. Do not talk to the abuser about your friend, or let the abuser see you as a threat to their relationship.
See our leaflet for contact details of support organisations who be able to support them or call us on 01502 572143 for more information and support.