Staying home can help slow the spread of COVID-19, but it may not feel safe for those experiencing domestic violence. Stress and uncertainty during the pandemic, as well as limited access to help in your community, can make existing abuse worse — or lead to new family violence.
If you feel there’s immediate danger, please call 911 right away.
Domestic violence includes abuse that can be emotional, physical, financial, and/or sexual. And it can look different for everyone. It’s important to remember that it isn’t your fault, and you shouldn’t feel ashamed for seeking help. If you’re not sure your home is a safe place for you or your family, here are some common signs:
- You feel stressed or worried about your safety or your children’s safety at home.
- You’re afraid of your partner or family member.
- You or your children have been physically hurt or threatened, or the severity or frequency of violence has escalated.
- Your partner or family member restricts your access to food, medication, transportation, money, connections with your family and friends, or your other activities, even at home.
If any of the above is happening to you or someone you love, you can:
The above resources can also help you develop a safety plan for reacting to dangerous situations. A safety plan can include ways to cope with your emotions, how to tell others about the abuse, how to take legal action, and more. If you can, consider making a safety plan and discussing it with a trusted family member, friend, or neighbor.