Warning Signs

Q: Why do victims stay with their abusers? Is the abuse the victim’s fault?

A: Victims stay with abusers for many reasons, including financial dependency, emotional isolation, guilt, low self-esteem, lack of better options, fear, or even an inability to see the difference between a loving relationship and an abusive one. Abuse is never the victim’s fault. There is no excuse for relationship violence, and common blaming tactics the abuser uses such as “he/she started it,” “he/she hit me first,” etc, are not acceptable excuses for violence.

Q: Someone I know is in an abusive relationship. Where can this person go for help?

A: A number of resources are available. Nationally, there is the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or 1-800-787-3224 (TTY). This line can help connect those seeking help to local services.For the UMBC campus, the VAV staffs at University Health Services, the Women’s Center, the Counseling Center, or the UMBC Campus Police are all available to assist those in need.

Q: I want to get out of an abusive relationship. What should I do? What’s a good safety plan?

A: Here are some tips on creating a good safety plan. However, do consider calling a hotline or talking to a friend or counselor as well.