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Help someone being hurt

Helping someone who is being hurt.

If you think that someone you know is being abused, or is an abuse victim or battered woman, it can be hard to know what to do. Here are a few guidelines:

Emotional support: Believe the victim, listen to her, respect what she is saying. Express concern and care. Respect that leaving is her choice to make, don’t tell her what to do or how she should feel. Be a supportive listener. Help her identify her options. Affirm her worth, and that it’s not her fault.

Logistical support: Give your friend resources and hotlines in the area (but not on a printed list that the abuser may find). Invite her to make phone calls from your house for safety. Tell her where she can go to a shelter then practice walking there with her, or taking the bus.

Spiritual support: Remind her to have faith in her own goodness, nobility, and worthiness. If she tells you her spiritual/religious beliefs/practices, you may offer her support accordingly – pray, chant or meditate with her. Ask her if she would like you to accompany her to visit a temple, mosque, church, or house of worship. Assure her that she is cared about, that she is wanted in the world, and that she is not alone.

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