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In Case of Emergency Dial 911!
How To Get Help
If you are being abused, it is not your fault and there are ways to get help.
If you are a victim of domestic or dating violence you can call the Massachusetts domestic violence hotline Safelink at 1-877-785-2020, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you are in immediate danger please dial 911. Please see below for more information about domestic violence resources in your region or for your specific needs.
National Sexual Assault Hotline
Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network
For a comprehensive list of domestic violence organizations in Massachusetts see:
How to Help a Friend or Loved one
There are a number of ways you can help a friend or family member who is being abused. Below are some "Dos" and "Don'ts" about helping a loved one.
- Let the victim know you are there for her/him, and that you are willing to listen and be supportive. Acknowledge how difficult it must be for them.
- Help the victim get medical attention if she or he is injured from the abuse.
- Accept what the victim tells you without judging or doubting her/him.
- Remind the victim that the abuse is not their fault and that they do not deserve to be abused.
- Encourage the victim to seek help and find resources, provide the SafeLink 24-hour hotline phone number and offer to help the victim make the call: 1-877-785-2020
- Help the victim make a safety plan (for more information go here: http://www.janedoe.org/find_help/for_someone_you_know and here: http://www.ncadv.org/protectyourself/SafetyPlan_130.html)
- Take care of yourself -- it can be very emotional and hard to see someone you care about experience abuse. If you have questions or concerns or just need to talk, many resources and hotlines are available for you here: http://www.janedoe.org/find_help
- Criticize or blame the victim for the abuse.
- Pressure or rush the victim to make a specific choice against his or her will.
- Try to end the relationship on their behalf or force them to take a step she/he is uncomfortable or unready to do.
- Gossip about the victim's situation -- if you need help or support in dealing with a friend or loved one, talk to qualified resources such as a national or local hotline. It is important to maintain the victim's trust and not say anything that could potentially put them in harm's way.
- Try to fight, talk to, or otherwise confront the abuser. Avoid contacting him or her entirely.