Do you live in a relationship where your freedom is limited by your partner? Does your partner insult you or oppress you in other ways? Has your partner frightened you, threatened you or been violent towards you?
Here is some advice if you feel that you live in a relationship that is not good for you:
- Call a women’s aid service, women’s aid helpline or RFSL’s crime victim service. This will give you the opportunity to discuss your situation, anonymously if you wish. Look at the Help guide. Here you will find information on the help available in your municipality.
- Tell somebody. Rely on the fact that those close to you want what’s best for you.
- Keep a diary; details may become important and your memory may let you down.
- If you receive injuries, contact the district health centre or hospital so that they can be documented. This will be important if at some stage you decide to file a police report.
- Violent behaviour is often repeated. It can be important to be aware of this.
- If you have children, remember that they are also victims in some way. Neither you nor your children can feel well living with violence.
- Using violence and oppression in close relationships is a criminal act. Contact your nearest police station if you wish to report it.
- You can contact the social services. It is their job to help you if you are under duress in a relationship with somebody close to you. The Help guide provides contact information for the social services in your municipality.
Advice to relatives or friends of somebody who is subjected to violence
Seeing somebody you feel for suffer in a relationship is often very difficult to cope with. Most people in this situation feel powerless and don’t know how to react. But remember that daring to act may result in your friend finding the strength to change her situation and release herself from a life marked by violence and oppression.
What can you do?
- You can call anonymously to a women’s aid centre, women’s aid helpline or RFSL’s crime victim service. Here you can discuss your anxiety with somebody experienced in destructive relationships. Look at the Help guide for contacts within your own municipality.
- Dare to see and dare to ask.
- Trust your ears.
- Remember that children living with domestic violence are children under duress. It is the responsibility of all adults to react if they feel that a child is in need of help.
- You can file a report to the police. Domestic violence can be a criminal act, in which case it is in the category of general prosecution.