Thinking of Leaving?

Woman comforting friend

Leaving an abusive relationship

It’s up to you to decide whether you’re ready to leave. There are many reasons to stay in an abusive relationship and many reasons to go, and you have a choice. Leaving may stop the abuse, but it’s often the most dangerous time in an abusive relationship.

If you decide to leave, it can help talk to family members or friends who can offer support. You can also call our 24-Hour Helpline and talk to an advocate about safety planning.

Leaving an abusive home

If you’re thinking about leaving your home, unless it is an emergency, it is very important to prepare. Here are some ways you can keep yourself safer before you leave:

Share your plan

Let someone else know what’s going on. Reach out to a family member, friend, pastor, rabbi, doctor, coworker, mentor, or advocate.


Pack a bag in advance and keep it in a safe place that your abuser can’t easily locate like your car or at a friend’s place. Be sure to pack for your children too.

Don’t forget your personal items and documents:

  • Social security cards
  • Medical and immunization records
  • Driver’s license
  • Passports
  • Insurance policies
  • Financial information, including copies of bank statements, credit card statements, and mortgage or rental agreements
  • Prescription medicines for you and your children

Phone safety

Hide a disposable phone in your car, purse, or another discreet location so that you can still make calls. If your cell phone has a GPS tracker, make sure to turn it off before leaving. Learn how to keep yourself safer when you use digital devices.


If you and your abuser share children and you’re worried about custody, you may be able to file for a Domestic Violence Protection Order (DVPO).

If you have questions or need support, call our 24-Hour Helpline at 425-746-1940 or send us a message.