If you are in an abusive relationship, you are certainly not alone. Every day, many Louisiana families deal with the complexities and dangers of domestic violence. Your situation may be further complicated if you and your spouse have children together. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to protect your children from exposure to violent situations.
Children are heavily influenced by the world around them and can easily be affected by changes to their environment, living condition and family situation. According to womenshealth.gov, you can take some precautions to help lessen the stress from situations related to domestic violence. These include the following:
- Take time to listen: More than ever, your children will need someone to talk to if they are subjected to violence-related stress. Try your best to be attentive and sincere in listening to their concerns and taking steps to prevent further anxiety.
- Seek counseling: One great thing you can do is to seek counseling on behalf of your children. Working with a professional counselor, your children may feel better about sharing their feelings in an environment that is safe, comfortable and accepting.
- Designate a safe spot: Be sure that your children understand where to go if they witness domestic violence. Encourage them to stay away from the situation, call for help if possible and go to a place that will provide protection.
- Try to get out: If you are the victim of domestic violence, try your hardest to get out of the situation and take your children with you. Enlist the help of trusted family and friends to get away from the violence and into a safe environment.
If not addressed immediately, domestic violence can affect children in a variety of ways including health problems, feelings of guilt and anxiety, depression and even behavior issues. The information in this article is intended for educational purposes only and should not be taken as legal advice.