There are several stages of abuse and depending upon which stage a you are in, you will need different forms of help. The links below will provide information about each stage as well as contact information for resources in Chapel Hill and Carrboro. By clicking on the statements below, you will find resources to help you decide what to do next.
- I think my partner may be abusing me, but I'm not sure.
I know my partner is abusing me but I'm not sure what to do next.
If your partner is abusing you, your first priority is whether or not you or your children need emergency medical attention. For medical attention your two local choices are: UNC Hospital.s emergency room and the Inter-Faith Council; Inter-Faith has a free medical clinic.
Once your emergency medical needs have been taken care of, you should prepare to leave the abuser. While you cannot control the abuse or abusive behaviors, you can control your reaction to them; leaving the abuser is the most responsible thing you can do for yourself. To leave the abuser, your first priority is to find shelter. You can find shelter from family or friends; but remember to only tell your whereabouts to people you trust; these people will not tell the abuser where you are. If friends and family are not an option, you can find temporary housing at a local shelter. The Family Violence Prevention Center offers temporary housing for women.
The next thing you should do is file any necessary charges with the Police Department. You may want to file a Personalized Protection Order against the abuser. Also, if you have children you may want to file for temporary custody; the police department in Chapel Hill can help you with both of these things, as well as provide tips for maintaining your safety. The link below will tell you exactly who to call at the Orange County Police Department.
The last few steps involve setting up your life, independent from your partner. You will find a place to live, potentially a job, and find therapeutic services to help you resolve any lingering issues left over from the abuse. If you do not have a lot of money, you can file for Section 8 government housing which offers housing at a reduced rate; the link below will tell you who to contact for assisted housing. Also, the Women's Center can offer tips on finding other housing assignments and job information. There are also ways to receive therapy for post traumatic stress from abuse; there are resources that will help you get free therapy; getting therapy for yourself and your children is a crucial step in ending the cycle of abuse. The link below will tell you how to find all of this information in Orange County.
Click here for resources that can help you figure out how you want to handle the situation.
- I think I want to leave my partner but I'm not sure how.
- I think I am in danger and I need to leave NOW.
- I would like to leave my partner and I want to plan it out.
- I have left my partner but I still need help.