5 ways to prevent domestic violence during quarantine

5 ways to prevent domestic violence during quarantine

For domestic violence victims forced to stay at home with their harassers, finding ways to minimize exposure to assault and injury is critical. After following domestic violence cases for years, I have been able to observe exactly what is confirmed empirically: there are common stable patterns regarding the circumstances under which violence begins and intensifies. Consequently, when an abuser and a victim are quarantined together, the goal is to take measures to prevent aggression.

Here are five ways.


1. Plan home security

Among concerns about threats to physical health, some abusers can manipulate victims by holding back access to medicines, food, and useful products such as hand sanitizer. This can be a serious problem when a victim leaves the house every day, particularly given the scarcity of sanitizing products on the market.

Some victims who have found themselves in this dilemma may choose to leave a supply of essential health goods to family members or neighbors if they fear that their partner may confiscate their supplies at home, in order to guarantee access to what they need. .


2. Eliminate potential weapons

Family members living with a violent individual can preemptively limit access to weapons. In addition to firearms, which tend to be in a locked container, family members who fear a violent partner should remove anything that can be used as a weapon in the fit of anger. This includes sharp knives, as well as heavy objects and / or with sharp edges on hand even if positioned high.

Look around the kitchen to see how easy it would be on most occasions to grab something that could be used as a weapon. Common objects such as appliances or large cups, can be stored safely, high in the closets or in other places that require more time and greater difficulty to be reached. Potential victims wisely clean the wall cabinets in all rooms of easy-to-grasp objects that can be used as weapons.

3. Use the spaces available

Even if there is an order to stay indoors, it is important to find ways to find your own spaces. Victims may decide to go for a short walk outside to get some air. Sometimes another option is to take a break on a balcony or even in a locked vehicle, provided that the victims remember to always take their phone, iPad, medicines or anything else they can take with them. need.

We also advise victims to make sure that all their devices remain charged, even at home, in case they have to make an emergency call to avoid mistreatment. 

4. Distraction as a defense

Many affront can be defused through distraction. Partners in unstable relationships, stuck at home together, can define some enjoyable activities, TV shows or even special meals that could be used to divert attention from confrontations. It is important to divert attention early, before anger reaches an excessive level. When there are multiple family members living with an unstable individual, they may share this responsibility to rely on the strength of the majority, thereby sharing reasonable efforts.

The goal is to create a diversion that can help reduce tension.


5. The fundamental support 

Many abusers perform better in the presence of others, but in this period you are not free to have more people close to you. As for seeking help in an emergency, it is useful to agree on a word with a neutral meaning to use in a phone call to a family member or friend, who can then come to your aid or call for help if necessary.

Collective efforts to support each other will improve our ability to help friends and loved ones withstand isolation while staying healthy and safe.