Planning Your Escape

jennifer brower naperville

Planning Your Escape

The following is my advice that I personally used. I am in no way an expert. Get your police department and domestic violence counselors involved. For more information, please go to National Domestic Violence Hotline Safety Planning

If you are in immediate danger or think you MIGHT be in immediate danger, LEAVE! If you cannot leave, dial 911. Teach your children to dial 911 if you cannot.

Click here for a pdf file of a personal safety plan from the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

Also, when using a computer, be sure to clear your cache when done and use an email address & password that your abuser does not know.

Your Safety Bag

Pack a safety bag. This should include everything you will need for yourself and any children for at least a few days. You should keep your safety bag with a relative or friend. This is what was in my safety bag:

1) Disposable cell phone & list of phone numbers
2) A reloadable debit card with some cash on it for gas
3) Small amount of cash
4) Copies of important documents such as IDs, passports, social security numbers, mortgage paperwork, bank statements, etc – I scanned mine and had them in an online document share 😉
5) Extra keys
6) Pepper spray
7) Hairdryer, brush, hairspray, deodorant, makeup, shampoo (travel size if possible)
8) Clothing for 3 days. Include something you can wear to court.
9) Any valuables you may want, ie my father’s pocket watch.

I kept this in the trunk of my car. I also had a set of keys and money in my desk drawer at work.

Don’t forget any medications etc.

Safe Places In the Home

Know where you can go in your home that is safe, ie where there are no weapons, knives, tools, etc. Always know the quickest way out and never be in a place where you can be cornered and not escape. f you cannot get out of the house, get someplace where there is a phone. Pick it up and hit 911. Even if you can’t talk to the dispatcher, the dispatcher will send police. Start screaming!

If you cannot get away, curl up in a ball, protect your head and torso. This is worst case scenario.

Make A Plan

Work out in your mind what you will say and do. Be prepared. One thing I did when I left my home was go to a gas station where I knew the police would sit and watch for speeders at night. Go where there are people and video cameras. Do not leave your house and go someplace isolated.

The most dangerous time is right after you leave because your abuser will realize that he has lost control over you.

Most importantly, use common sense. Tell someone you trust about your plans. Perhaps develop a codeword that means you are putting your plan into action.

Again, see the link at the top of the page.