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Don’t be a bystander to abuse or violence - what you can do to help

It's difficult to approach someone who may be in need of help. However you could become someone's lifeline by simply asking "are you ok?".

You may fear the consequence of asking, that it is none of your business, that they are already getting help somewhere else. However, you may be the only person who's noticed.

Those who have survived abuse are clear that they want to be approached and asked if they need help, that they need to know that there are people around them who will be ready to help when they are ready to make a change.

How you can help someone

If you are worried that someone is in immediate danger, call the police on 999.

If they are not in immediate danger:

  • Ask "are you ok?" - let them know they have your support.
  • Re-assure them it is not their fault.
  • Re-assure them that you believe them.
  • Talk to them about professional help they can get.
  • DON'T confront the abuser - This can put the victim in a dangerous situation.
  • DON'T encourage anyone experiencing domestic abuse to leave - leaving can be a very dangerous time.

If you don't feel able to approach the person you are worried about, Call the Live Fear Free helpine for advice on how you can take action to help.

Talk to us now

If someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse or sexual violence, we can give you the advice you need.

Get in touch with Live Fear Free advisors free of charge by phone, online chat, text or email.

How asking helped these survivors