If you are in an abusive relationship, making a safety plan is a good idea. It can help you to prepare yourself to leave, and to protect you from further danger. By having a safety plan, you will have what you need to stay as safe as possible.
It is important to make sure that the children know and understand your safety plan as well. However, dealing with children can be tricky and complicated. For example, you won’t want them to accidentally tell the abusive parent about the safety planning. Some organizations suggest using neutral phrases. You could say, “we want to prepare for an emergency” rather than “we are preparing for what to do if Dad becomes violent.”
Many organizations suggest going to professionals who have experience safety planning with children. They can help with the safety planning process. They will have ideas about how to bring it up with the children. And they can guide you in actually coming up with a safety plan.
One reason why some people worry about making a safety plan is because they are afraid that the abuser will find it. The abuser might become more angry and dangerous if they find out that the victim is planning to leave. You may feel that there is no safe place inside your home to hide your safety plan. Maybe you could leave it with someone you trust, such as a family member, friend, or coworker. This person can keep it in a safe place for you. Whenever you need to review your safety plan, you will know where to go to look it over.
For more information about services and support, you can contact the Family Violence Info Line. Their toll-free phone number is 310-1818, and they are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in more than 170 languages.