Helping someone else

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.

Our leaflet in Polish, Portuguese and Lithuanian

Remember to keep yourself and your family safe when supporting someone who is suffering domestic abuse

National 24 hour Domestic Abuse Helpline 0808 2000 247