If you or a loved one is dealing with domestic violence, you do not have to suffer alone. There are professionals who are trained in helping you to break free from the cycle of abuse. Although leaving an abusive partner can be terrifying, you need to get help before the abuse intensifies. When it comes to domestic violence, you should never be afraid to seek help through medical, emotional or legal support.
Domestic Violence Is Not Just Physical
One of the main reasons that people choose not to get help is because they are worried about how it will affect their family. Domestic violence is not always physical. Often, it includes emotional, sexual, economic or verbal components. The abuser may refuse to share financial resources, or they may encourage you to quit your job. By taking economic control, the abuser is trying to make you dependent on them entirely so that you cannot get help.
Legal Recourse for Financial Problems
If you are worried about leaving for financial reasons, you can get legal protection. You have rights to your earnings, and there are other programs that can help you to restart your life. Worries about finances do not have to stop you from leaving your abusive partner. Depending on your relationship status, the number of children in your family and the length of your relationship, you may be legally entitled to a part of the finances.
Rediscovering Your Confidence
Over time, an abuser may use verbal and emotional techniques to make you feel like you are unable to carry on with your life. They may isolate you from your friends and family so that no one is able to help you. Likewise, they may try to humiliate you in public or criticize everything about you. All of this is done to break you down so that you are not able to leave them. In reality, you have all of the tools and abilities necessary to become independent. There are domestic abuse hotlines and programs that are designed to help you get back on your feet and rediscover yourself. No matter how bad the abuse has been, you have the potential to start a new, happier life.
Remember: The Law Is on Your Side
As you work toward leaving your partner, remember that the law is on your side. Domestic abuse in any form is not allowed under law and carries a stiff prison sentence. You have a right to be safe, and there are legal options that can help you along the way. Talk to a San Diego domestic violence attorney to understand your options. It’s important to understand your rights, and a lawyer can help.
The Community Is Ready to Support You
If you are afraid of starting a new life, living on your own or finding a job, you do not have to worry. There are community programs that are designed to connect you with community members who can help. Often, there are transitional housing programs that you can use as you regain your independence. In addition, you can find programs to help with food, shelter, employment resources and childcare as you make the transition.
File a Protective Order
When you are ready to leave, you can make sure that your partner is not able to come near you again. A protective order will legally require them to break off contact with you. Through a legal advocate, you can learn how to file a protective order and ensure your future safety.
No one deserves to live with domestic violence, and there are programs that can help you. Legal advice can assist you in figuring out your rights to financial and economic resources. In addition, you can get a protective order against your partner so that you are kept physically safe. Shelters, transitional housing, community programs and counseling are all available to help you on the path to your own safe, happy independence.
This article is courtesy of Anita Ginsburg, a freelance writer from Denver who often writes about home, family, law and business. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family when she isn’t writing.