There are many remedies available to the victims of domestic violence. Many shelters have been created, support groups established, counseling services made available, and tough legislation enacted.
The first step, as the victim of a batterer, is to remove yourself (and your children) from the abusive relationship. If you have a nearby friend or relative you may be able to go there, but more appropriate would be your local shelter. Once you are safe, you can take some time to step back and formulate your plan.
Next, it would be advisable to contact a domestic violence organization for assistance through this tough time. You can not do this alone; you will need the guidance and support of experienced professionals. Many advocates are available to help you, and they can be located by using any internet search engine.
Whether or not you decide to stay in the relationship is entirely up to you, but here are some things to consider:
- If you decide to try to work things out, he MUST get counseling. If he refuses help, or continues to batter, it is not recommended that you stay in such a relationship, as each occurrence will continue to get worse.
- File, and follow through with, criminal charges. Whether or not you decide to stay in this relationship, the best deterrent of future incidents is to press charges. Legal action may dictate therapy for the batterer and will also ensure that permanent records are on file.
- If a child is exposed to abuse without recourse, chances are he/she will internalize that this action is OK, and will develop abusive behavior toward others.
- Where you (and your children) are going to reside and for how long.
- You will need to determine your finances; decide whether you will work, or continue work, what types of financial help are available from government or other groups, and what financial benefits did you and your partner have that you are entitled to.
- Legal counsel.
- If the incidents are repetitive or severe, you can apply for a Temporary Protective Order.
SAFE Shelter- Provides emergency shelter for victims of domestic violence and a 24 hour crisis line. Offers individual counseling, support groups, referral services, legal advocacy, and preventative education.
3025 Bull Street, Savannah, GA 31405
24- Hour Domestic Violence Hotline: (912)629-8888
National Domestic Violence Hotline: (800)799-7233 (SAFE)