I am often asked, “Why does a women stay in such horrific abuse?”
My response is this, “a women will stay because the fear of leaving is greater than the fear of staying. A women will leave when the fear of staying is greater than the fear of leaving.”
I have been reading the search terms to get to this blog and one that came up today was the above questions, what to do if husband/spouse is abusing me now.
The biggest concern is how imminent is the threat of harm. Can you get out of the home now safely? If you can, then leave. Go somewhere where the abuser won’t look for you. Then call Call the abuse hot line at 800-799-7233 and they will support you is major life decision. If you have children this can be harder but if you are fearing for your life, you have no choice but to leave now. Wait until he is sleeping and just walk out. Just the shirt on your back is better than laying on that back for good.
Call the abuse hotline at 800-799-7233
They will help you find a place to go and support you now, when you need help the most. You are not alone, no one other than your abuser wants to see you living this way.
If you are not in immediate danger call for support and they will help you plan how to get out safely. They will arrange to have someone come get you and your children and get you somewhere safe. This is a best bet if you are afraid he will come after you. By calling the hotline you will also have someone to support your situation if needed for restraining orders. Never, ever, ever tell an abuser you are planning to leave. Once they suspect all hell will break lose. Just play it normal but in the back of your mind always be planning how to get out safely.
We won’t all have the chance to make such an escape plan. For me, over 10 years ago the fear of staying greatly out-weighed the fear of leaving. My husband had been drunk for 3 days solid, pretty normal, but he was meaner each time. He forced me to sit on the couch while he threw butcher knives just missing the top of my head. It took a knife that close to my head for me to say, okay, tonight I will die for sure. He had pulled all the phones out so I couldn’t call the police. I went upstairs once I was allowed off the couch and took my son to my bed. My son was only 4 and sweetly went along with being woken and now coloring on mom’s bed in the middle of the night.
I poped out the screen in my 2nd story bedroom and open the window wide. I was as loud as possible to attract attention. I could hear him breaking things downstairs. I was ready to jump out that window with my son as soon as I heard his feet at the bottom step. I knew that knife would be thrust into me tonight and I wasn’t going to just let him. I threw pillows and blankets out under the window to break the fall. As long as my son didn’t get hurt it would work.
Thankfully, I never had to jump. I watched as the cruiser pulled in my driveway. I live in an apartment and a neighbor (my guardian angel) called police. It was the first time when the police asked me, “are you afraid of him?” That I said yes. They took him into custody for only the night since he hadn’t hit me this time???
Having the police take him gave me a few hours to leave safely. I took some basics and called a friend I hadn’t talked to in many years, she welcomed us in. I stayed only a night and then filed protective orders to have my husband removed for abuse and threatening to kill me many times.
I won’t say it was just peachy after that night, but it was the first time I had a glimmer of hope that I wouldn’t die that day. I had lived in that fear for many, many years.
I minimized much of what he did as I am certain that you do to. I beg you go get help. I look at the damage it has left my son with now, 10 years later. No matter how old your children are, they will be effected by your staying.
One Important Safety Tip: If you call an abuse hotline or someone your husband/mate may consider a threat to him after hanging up call information or something like that. Trust me, you never want him to hit redial and find out that you have called and told someone about what he is doing. I did this after most of my phone calls after learning that lesson one time.
Be safe. I will never email anyone that leaves a post here without their telling me it is safe to email. I don’t want to cause you a reason to fear talking to anyone. If you do make a comment I will respond on the board here with the original post. Most times within a day or 2.
RESOURCES: List on blogroll this site.
Don’t stay and wish things would get better. Leave and see that they can.
Domestic Abuse Hotline 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE)