You can’t stop your partner’s violence and abuse – only they can do that. But there are things you can do to increase your own and your children’s safety. Plan in advance how you might respond in different situations, including crisis situations.
· Think about the different options that may be available to you. · Keep with you any important and emergency telephone numbers: Domestic abuse service – WKS 0800 028 3398;
· Teach your children to call 999 in an emergency, and what they would need to say (for example, their full name, address and telephone number).
· Are there neighbours you could trust, and where you could go in an emergency? If so, tell them what is going on, and ask them to call the police if they hear sounds of a violent attack.
· Rehearse an escape plan, so in an emergency you and the children can get away safely.
· Pack an emergency bag for yourself and your children, and hide it somewhere safe (for example, at a neighbour’s or friend’s house). Try to avoid mutual friends or family.
· Try to keep a small amount of money on you at all times – including change for the phone and for bus fares.
· Know where the nearest phone is, and if you have a mobile phone, try to keep it with you.
· If you suspect that your partner is about to attack you, try to go to a lower risk area of the house – for example where there is a way out and access to a telephone. Avoid the kitchen or garage where there are likely to be knives or other weapons; and avoid rooms where you might be trapped, such as the bathroom, or where you might be shut into a cupboard or other small space.
· Be prepared to leave the house in an emergency.