How to help a friend who’s being abused
THE NEWS TRIBUNE
• Be a good listener, ask questions delicately and don’t judge.
• Be careful. Abusers can go after a victim’s allies, too.
• Watch what you say and do. An abuser might be listening in on phone calls or other conversations and checking the victim’s mail and e-mail. Take care not to say anything that might enrage the abuser.
• Offer unconditional support. Let your friend know that you will help whenever you’re asked.
• Learn the signs of domestic violence and ways to cope with it.
• Gather a list of shelters, agencies and professionals who can help when the victim is ready to seek outside counsel or get away from the abuser.
• Encourage victims to document injuries.
• Urge the victim to seek medical attention if he or she has been injured, and to be honest with the medical staff about the injuries.
Sources: City of Tacoma, Crystal Judson Family Justice Center