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How to help someone in abusive relationship

(3 Posts)
AristotlesArmy Sat 04-Mar-17 12:36:44

Hoping all you lovely people might have some ideas.

I know a lady, she has two young children and is being abused. No physical violence yet. Although there's everything else, isolation, finance, emotional abuse and property damage. Add to the mix that she's disabled and is terrified if she leaves she'll lose the kids. Do you know if a refuge would take her?

I don't know what/if I can do to help but it scares me. We all know that "but he wouldn't ever hit me", is nonsense. And even without that it's no way to live.

scoobydoo1971 Sat 04-Mar-17 13:36:28

Ring Women's Aid for advice. A benefits advisor via the citizens advice bureau might help with her finances.

Lots of disabled persons end up in refuge accommodation, but it helps if housing managers have notice to make adjustments (ground floor space for wheelchair...depends on the nature of the disability). The local housing authority would have to assess her for priority housing on the basis of her having medical needs (I am making huge assumptions about the lady here which I appreciate may not be correct). Fleeing domestic violence is not grounds for losing the children unless it puts them at safeguarding risk (i.e. unsuitable accommodation, unsuitable co-occupants at future address), and many women do take the brave step of leaving a bad situation for the sake of their children.

Of course there is the old saying about 'you can lead a horse to water...'. Your friend will only leave when she has made the decision to escape the abuse, and your role can only be supportive and supplying information until she has decided what to do next. It can be awful to witness what is going on, but she has to leave for her own reasons.

AristotlesArmy Sat 04-Mar-17 14:14:47

I know I can't force her. And I'm not really trying. I'm one of the few people she talks to so I've tried hard to be a sympathetic ear whilst gently suggesting she rings women's aid. I don't want to push and have him decide I'm a threat (which he's done with everyone else). I'm going very very carefully. I just wish I could promise everything would be OK. Her physical impairments make it hard for her to take care Of The kids and I know she's terrified he'll use that and get custody.

I might call women's aid myself for advice. I also looked up her local refuge (he moved her away from everyone for a job that miraculously never came through and now won't move back).

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