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Peace and Safety in the Christian Home
Should any attack you, it will not be my doing,... you shall prevail and you shall rebut every charge brought against you – vindication comes from me. This is the very word of the Lord.  Isaiah 54:15,17

Symptoms of Abuse

Frequent or unexplained injuries or somatic illness
Headaches, stomach aches, asthma
Nervous, anxious, fearful
Short attention span
Tired, lethargic, seems lazy
Isolated, lonely, difficulty trusting
Feels guilty, especially about anger
Blames others for their behavior
Relationships that start intensely or end abruptly
Low self-esteem/ Overly aggressive
Afraid to disagree
Sleep disturbance
Startle response
Suicidal thoughts
Additionally For Children
Developmental regression
Over or under achieving
Bed Wetting
Fear of separation from mom

Ask Yourself, Ask Your Friend

Are you:

Often surprised or frightened by your partner’s angry reactions?
Frustrated because you can’t get him to understand you?
Feeling left out because he rarely shares his thoughts, feelings, or plans with you?
Feeling like you are going crazy?

Is Your Partner:
·        Irritable, sullen, or critical?
·        Unpredictable or explosive?
·        Manipulative or jealous?
·        Controlling?
·        Secretative?
·        Friendly to others, but demanding at home?

Has any of the following been done to you?

Emotional/Verbal Abuse 
Name calling, making fun of, insulting
Blackmail, threatening, accusing, controlling, following, humiliating, isolating from others, criticizing, manipulating, blaming,playing mind games, crazy making
Minimizing your concerns
Treating you like a servant, abandonment, intimidating, silent withdrawal
Saying you caused the abuse
Physical Abuse
Pushing, shoving, backhanding, biting, strangling, punching, burning,
smothering, grabbing, kicking, twisting, smacking, hair pulling, holding, carrying, sitting on, banging against the wall or floor
Throwing/ breaking objects or windows, driving recklessly in order to scare
Punching or kicking a wall or door, blocking a car or doorway
Detaching or disabling a phone
Locking in or out of the home, in a closet or other confined space
Abusing a pet or killing a pet, brandishing a weapon
Fiscal Abuse
Restricting, tracking, gambling, hiding, or lying about family funds
Asset fraud, refusing to pay child support
Refusing to let you have a job

Sexual Abuse

Luring, tricking, trapping, coercing, or bribing anyone with less maturity or power into a sexual experience
Sexually stimulating or being stimulated by anyone disempowered by age, size, handicap, or situation. This could be physical, verbal, or visual, including discussing or describing, watching revealing or fondling
Rape or forced sex of any type even within marriage
Indecent exposure
Refusing to use birth control
Replacing marital relations with pornography, making you watch it, or practicing pornographic acts on you
Transmitting Herpes, HIV, or other STD’s to a faithful spouse

Be Prepared, Have a Safety Plan

If you are injured, have a doctor take photos and write a report. Keep your own evidence of damage such as ripped clothing and photos of bruises and injuries. Keep these in a safe place away from your home.
Plan a safe place and time to go for help that he won’t suspect. Have phone numbers with you.
Contact your local domestic violence shelter for safety planning, available resources and legal aid.
Teach your children not to protect you, pets, or toys. Be sure they know how to get out of the house and to the safe place.
Arrange a signal with a trustworthy neighbor who will call the police. This may be a light or a message saying, “Do not disturb me right now.”
Put money away; even if it’s a little bit every week. Start a bank account in your name. Consider Proverbs 31 – The noble wife is a financially independent business woman with her own business who travels as necessary to provide for her family.
Arrange for pet care.

Keep these necessities or copies of them with someone you trust:

spare keys, clothes, money, food stamps, medications & prescriptions
Important documents:
Birth certificates (yours and children’s)
Social Security cards, passports
Work permits, green cards, visa, Insurance papers
Banking account information
Immunization and medical records
Lease, rental, house deed
Protective order, custody papers
Child’s toy
Important photos, keepsakes

Listen to your instincts. If the situation is dangerous, consider giving the abuser what he wants to calm him down, just until you are out of danger and stay near an exit. Avoid arguments, especially in a bathroom, kitchen, or near weapons.

At work. Identify a friend to update about your situation. Provide a picture of the batterer to the friend and building security. Have your calls screened, if possible. Have an escort to and from transportation. AS often as possible travel a variety of routes and use different entries to the building.

Always remember: It is against the Word of God and a crime for anyone, even family or friends, to hurt you, your children, or your pets.

Help a Friend

Ask direct questions, gently. Give time to talk.
Ask again a few days later. Don’t tell her what to do.
Validate her feelings.
Encourage her to follow her interests. Be dependable. Recognize improvement. Allow disagreement without withdrawing. Show affection.
Listen without judging. If she shares something of her abuse, believe her. This may be only the beginning.
Remind her that domestic violence is a crime and God wants her to be safe.
Keep confidences, unless someone under or over 65 is being abused. Then you are required by law to report. YOU MAY REPORT ANONYMOUSLY.
Let her know she is not to blame, not responsible, and does not deserve abuse. The abuser is the one who breaks the covenant.

Help her to make a safety plan.

Make strong statements against domestic violence. Point out that the perpetrator is responsible. Do not accept excuses. Realize that abusers can change if stopped early and held accountable by the community.

National Domestic Violence
Peace & Safety in the Christian Home
1095 Stony Brook Road
Brewster, MA 02631
Telephone: 508-896-3518
Fax 508-896-6864
Web-site www.peaceandsafety.com
To contact us:

Spiritual Director - Martha Thorson  martha@peaceandsaftey.com

Saftey specialist --Julie Owens

For military families--Chaplian Vermont   lee@peaceandsaftey.com

President--Catherine Kroeger  

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