Guest blog: Flying Solo was one of my favorite reads of 2012. In this book by Jeanette Vaughan, the protagonist, Nora, came up with an ingenious and thrilling plan which worked for her. She found a way to escape from a powerful husband and domestic abuse. I found it fascinating that this was based on a true story. Most women could never pull off that kind of escape, yet it must be done. At the point of separation, the situation can become the most volatile as the abuser feels a loss of control and fights harder to gain it back.
So what steps should a person take to be prepared? First of all, let me stress that in the case of an emergency, don’t delay leaving if you haven’t completed this checklist! The safety of you and any children you have is the first priority.
That said, start working on this checklist now.
- Determine which friends or neighbors you could tell about the abuse. Ask them to call the police if they hear angry or violent noises. If you have children, teach them how to dial 911. Make up a code word that you can use when you need help.
- Talk to a friend or family member you can trust and tell them about your fears and that you are planning a safe escape. Even if you don’t know if and when you will leave, it is imperative to continue preparing for the day you decide you must leave.
- Have important phone numbers nearby for you and your children. Numbers to have are the police, hotlines, friends, family, and the local women’s shelter.
- Think about the various escape routes in your home just as you would for a fire drill.
- If there are any weapons in the house, find a way to get rid of them. At the very least, know where they are and attempt to lead your abuser away from these areas during an altercation.
- Open a bank account or find a safe place to stash money. Perhaps one of your safe people will keep your emergency bag at their home. Have coins or a prepaid cell or card to use. A charged cell phone will allow you to call 911 even if you do not currently have a service plan.
- Make spare keys to your car, house, and any others you might need, and keep them with your emergency bag.
- Request replacement credit cards and bank cards. It is also a good idea to include your driver’s license. You may decide to have them sent to a friend or family member’s home for placing in your bag.
- Make copies of all important papers such as:
- birth certificates
- social security cards
- school and medical records
- Car registration
- Welfare identification
- Passports, green cards, work permits
- Lease/rental agreement
- Mortgage payment book, unpaid bills
- Insurance papers
- PPO, divorce papers, custody orders
- Other items to have in your bag: medicines, personal hygiene items, and extra clothes.
I hope you found this guest blog, by Author Brinda Carey helpful. She is a survivor of abuse and sexual exploit from Arkansas. Brinda had the strength to not only overcome the abuse, but write about it to help others. Her books and motivational materials can be found on Amazon here. Her blog is at www.brindacarey.com She travels the country speaking out to women, reaching out to help them find ways to be strong and survive. AgeView Press is proud to announce that Belle of Steel number six is Brinda Carey.