Planning For Your Safety
Safety planning is a way to think about how you can be safer before your abusive partner scares or hurts you again.
Safety plans can be made for different situations. People make safety plans when they are living with or dating someone who is abusive and to protect themselves when leaving an abusive partner.
You probably already do this. Any time you do or say something to protect yourself or your children, you are using a safety plan. While you may already be doing this, it can be helpful to sit down and think about the things you can do when you feel unsafe or scared.
If you are planning to leave or already have left someone who is abusive, please know that sometimes the abuse can get worse when the relationship ends. This is why making a safety plan is so important. Making a safety plan can help keep you and your children safe.
How To Make A Safety Plan
One of the first things you can do is think about who you can go to for help. Who can you talk to? Who can you call if you need help?
Some people who you could call for help or support are:
- An advocate at the Advocacy Center
- Counselor, social worker or therapist
- Doctor or nurse
- Friends, family or neighbors
- Minister, rabbi, priest
- Department of Social Services caseworker
- Boss or someone you work with
Only you can choose who to tell and who to ask for help. It is important that you feel safe with the person you decide to tell. Some people feel more comfortable asking someone they don't know for help while others would rather ask a friend or a family member. It is about what feels most comfortable to you! Write down the names and phone numbers of the people who can help and keep the list in a safe place.
Sometimes people who do not know a lot about domestic violence do not say things that are helpful, even if they are trying to help. It is important that you keep asking until you get the help that you need.
You do not need to wait for an emergency to ask for help. It is a good idea to talk to people who can help you before an emergency. Then you will know where you can stay, where to go for help with money, or who can keep copies of important papers for you.
It can sometimes be hard to ask for help, but you do not deserve to be abused.
It can be hard to know what to do if you are being abused. You don't have to figure it out alone. The Advocacy Center has people you can talk to who can help you find out what your options are.