Slide Supporting friends and family with domestic abuse SUPPORTING FRIENDS
It can be difficult to know what to say when
you think someone you care for is being abused.

we want those we love

to live safely and be happy.

It can be really worrying when someone we care about is hurt or abused. Your help can make a big difference in her feeling supported.

Each situation can be different and there are things you can do to to help and to look after yourself. Within the information below is some advice that may not cover every situation but may be similar to your own.

If you think she is in immediate danger, then contact 999 and get help to her. 


Listen to her, try to understand and take care not to blame her. Tell her that she is not alone and that there are many women like her in the same situation.

give her time

Acknowledge that it takes strength to trust someone enough to talk to them about experiencing abuse. Give her time to talk, but don’t push her to go into too much detail if she doesn’t want to.

acknowledge her situation

Acknowledge that she is in a frightening and difficult situation.

be strong

Tell her that no one deserves to be threatened or beaten, despite what her abuser has told her. Nothing she can do or say can justify the abuser’s behaviour.

be a safe space

Support her as a friend. Encourage her to express her feelings, whatever they are. Allow her to make her own decisions.

meet her where she’s at

Don’t tell her to leave the relationship if she is not ready to do this. This is her decision.

accompany her to a medical appointment

Ask if she has suffered physical harm. If so, offer to go with her to a hospital or to see her GP.

report it with her

Help her report the abuse if this is something she wants to do.

have information to hand

Be ready to provide information on organisations that offer help to abused women and their children. Explain she has options – there is support available.

help her seek legal advice

If she has children and wants to see a solicitor then offer to go with her to visit a solicitor if she is ready to take this step.

make a plan

Plan safe strategies for leaving an abusive relationship.

don’t force it

Let her create her own boundaries of what she thinks is safe and what is not safe; don’t urge her to follow any strategies that she expresses doubt about.

look after her things

Offer your friend the use of your address and/or telephone number to leave information and messages and tell her you will look after an emergency bag for her, if she wants this.

be mindful of your own safety

Look after yourself while you are supporting someone through such a difficult and emotional time. Ensure that you do not put yourself into a dangerous situation; for example, do not offer to talk to the abuser about your friend or let yourself be seen by the abuser as a threat to their relationship.

what to say and do.

There is no perfect approach when supporting someone who is being abused, but staying safe yourself is important. We hope that our advice helps you and gives you confidence in how you support your loved one.

Feel free to contact us for further information or complete a referral form if you feel someone needs support.

LDAS support.

our services are delivered by qualified and experienced staff who are knowledgeable in domestic abuse.

The approach to how we deliver our support is reviewed by survivors who tell us what works and what doesn’t. This ensures we deliver the best possible support to survivors in way that suits their needs.

Click on the links below for more information.

one to one support

Your dedicated support worker will listen to you and help create a safety and support plan and provide external advocacy to get you to where to you need to be to live a life free from abuse.


Your counsellor will work with you on weekly or fortnightly basis (dependent on you needs) this is usually for an hour. They can help you recover from the trauma you have endured.

group programmes

Our programmes provide a supportive environment which allow you to share and recover from your experiences whilst developing further understanding of your experiences.


Your dedicated Bridge Mentor will work with you at your pace. They are able support you to navigate what can often seem like complex systems to ensure you live in safe home and look forward to a happy future.

we're here for you.

get support today.