Help Your Friend
Oftentimes family members and friends are unaware of abuse that may be happening. Even if they are aware, they do not necessarily have the tools they need to intervene. We encourage anyone to call our hotline for tips and support. (Hotline # 1.800.339.5017) Remember, it may seem obvious to everyone outside the relationship that the victim should leave their abuser, but it can be very difficult for the victim to come to that decision. It is very important that you be non-judgemental and know that they should be in charge of their decisions whether they seem right or wrong to you!
Here are some quick tips:
- Talk to your friend and be non-judgmental when discussing the abuse.
- Listen to your friend and believe him/her.
- Let your friend know that violence under any circumstance is unacceptable.
- Express your understanding, care, concern and support.
- Point out your friend's strengths. He/she may not see his/her own abilities and gifts because of being blinded by the effects of the abuse.
- Encourage your friend to confide in a trusted adult. Offer to go with him/her for help.
- Talk to a trusted adult if you believe your friend's situation is getting worse.
- Help your friend by suggesting a counselor or an advisor you trust.
- Never put yourself in a dangerous situation with your friend's partner. Don't try to mediate or otherwise get involved directly.
- Call the police if you witness and assault.
Quick tips on things to AVOID:
- Don't be critical of your friend or his/her partner.
- Don't ask blaming questions such as: "What did you do to provoke him/her?"; "Why don't you just break up with your partner?"; "Why can't you handle him/her?"
- Don't pressure your friend into making quick decisions.
- Don't assume that he/she wants to break up with his/her partner, or that you know what's best for your friend.