One in five women is abused by her partner or ex-partner. If this is happening to you, you do not have to put up with it. You are not to blame for the violence or abuse, although your partner may say that you are. No one deserves to be abused. If you are being abused you have choices. You may want to talk over your options with someone you trust or a worker from Women’s Aid. You can also phone the domestic abuse helpline on 0800 027 1234.
Your partner’s violence is not your fault. You are not responsible for it.
LOOK AFTER YOURSELF
Whether you decide to end the relationship with your partner or not, it is important to look after your physical and mental health and to think about how to protect you and your children from harm. You’re probably already doing many things to help protect yourself and your children. Women’s Aid can give you ideas about what has helped other women.
CALL FOR HELP
If you need immediate help contact Women’s Aid, the police domestic abuse liaison officer or your local social work office. You can also phone the domestic abuse helpline on 0800 027 1234.
WAYS TO KEEP SAFE
Women’s Aid provides information and support for women, children and young people with experience of domestic abuse. You can contact us by phone or email.
We will support you, listen to you and believe you. We are independent from social work, housing and the police.We will help you whether or not you want to stay with your partner and whether or not you want to stay in a refuge. If you are worried about your immigration status, we can help.
If you don’t feel safe in a relationship, or the behaviour of an ex-partner is frightening you, here are some things that you might want to think about.
1. If you want to speak to Women’s Aid or find out more, try to use phones or computers in a public place, like your local library. Home computers will store your web history, even if you have cleared it.
2. If it’s possible and safe, think about letting a colleague, friend or family member you trust know what’s happening; they can check in with you to make sure you’re safe. Think about how they will do this, using a safe phone number or message.
3. If you can, think about how you would let people know that you need help quickly, like an emergency word, hand movement or another kind of message.
4. If you are able to, try to memorise the numbers of services or friends who can help. Don’t hesitate to call the police on 999 if you need help.
5. If you’ve been hurt or injured, seek medical attention. Doctors and other health professionals may be able to help you. If you’re not registered with a GP, go to a hospital. They have a duty of care to see you, no matter what your immigration or financial status is.
6. If you can, think of somewhere safe to keep a small amount of money for a taxi fare or a phone call.
7. If you have children, teach them how to dial 999 in an emergency.
8. If you have access to your birth certificate, national insurance number, passport/nationality ID cards, immigration documents, housing documents and bank account information for yourself and your children, try and take these with you or get copies before leaving if it is safe to do so.
9. If you’re thinking of leaving, having these important documents in a safe place or with a trusted friend can be helpful.