What To Do If You Are Being Abused

i-know-i-should-leave-himBefore any of us can change a relationship, we have to understand what is occurring in it. But understanding is not enough. In order for your life and your relationship to change, you have to do something different, not just think about it differently.

Because abuse is about power and control, your partner is not going to want to loose his control over you. It is important to remember that when you are trying to change your relationship your partner may become even more of a bully or a tyrant, he might withdraw, threaten to leave or try to punish you. Some abusive men respond to their partner’s new strengths with a different kind of manipulation, tears, apologies and promises to change. All reactions have the same goal, to get his partner to give up her attempts to change the relationship.

You must be aware at all times of your safety and the safety of your children and be clear as to what you will and can do if the abusive behaviour does turn violent.

Your options
Talk to someone about how you feel. You can telephone Tearmann and speak to a trained member of staff.

You can explore all of the options and decide whether you want to stay in the relationship or end the relationship at any stage in the future.

It is very important that you nurture yourself when you are hurting and that you believe that you deserve the same kind of loving attention that you give to others. Making changes in an abusive relationship is not easy. An abusive relationship is like an open wound – it just continues to fester without healing. Tearmann have support services to help you; do not be afraid to ask for this help.

Safety Plan
If you have been in or are living in an abusive relationship, you need to look after your own safety and that of your children. You need to be ready to take action if you are at risk of being assaulted. Getting some useful items together in a safe place can help you later if you need to leave quickly.

Useful items to have ready:

  • A mobile phone for use in emergency
  • Social Services card
  • P.P.S. numbers
  • Medication for yourself and your children
  • Medical Card
  • Marriage, Birth Certificates, Driving Licence and Passports (your own and children’s).
  • Identity card if appropriate
  • Money, Keys, Taxi/Refuge number.
  • Children’s favourite toys, soothers, blankets, bottles.

If you are in immediate danger leave everything, do not put yourself or your children at risk.

If you need safe accommodation, you and your children can seek shelter at your nearest women’s refuge.

  • Drogheda Women’s refuge – 041-9844998
  • Dundalk Women’s refuge – 042- 9333244
  • Navan Women’s refuge – 046-9022393
  • Women’s Aid – 1800 341 900

Even if you do not want to take legal action at this time it is a good idea to report any physical assault or abuse to your local doctor or hospital. Apart from being essential to have injures treated properly, documentation from professionals such as a doctor, Gardai and refuge staff can be useful as vital evidence should you decide to take legal action.