Intimate Partner Violence Assistance Program (IPVAP) - VETERANS & PARTNERS - What Can I Do? - VHA Social Work
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Intimate Partner Violence Assistance Program (IPVAP) - VETERANS & PARTNERS - What Can I Do?

types IPV  ipv   IPV
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Help Someone Who Is Experiencing Violence

If you know someone who is experiencing intimate partner violence there are ways you can help. Individuals who are experiencing violence often feel alone and ashamed and feel there is no one they can turn to.

Here are ways you can help:

  • Listen without judging.
  • Let them know they can call you when they need help or they do not feel safe.
  • Be supportive.
  • Let them know you are concerned for their safety.
  • Help the person develop a safety plan.
  • Ask before tagging or checking in on someone on social media. Keep in mind that doing so could alert a partner of their location and affect their safety.
  • Offer local resources and offer to go with them to seek assistance.
  • Do not try to force them to leave. As difficult as it is, staying or leaving is their choice and it is most helpful to support them and try to enhance their safety whatever their choice may be.
  • If children are present or affected (witness) the IPV or you suspect that the children are also victims of abuse, this should be reported to your local Department of Family Services agency or the police.

When you see violence occurring, consider the 3 D’s (Distract, delegate and direct)

Only use these strategies if safe to do so. If the situation is already escalating, call 911 instead.

  • Distract – Draw the person’s attention to something else
  • Delegate – Grab someone who can help
  • Direct - Yell for the person to stop using violence

Help Someone Who Is Using Violence

  • Listen without judging.
  • Support the person and encourage them to get help.
  • Express concern for both parties.
  • Be a role model.
  • Share ways in which you handle conflict in a non-violent way.
  • Encourage the person to get help by talking to a therapist, pastor, or sponsor.
  • Educate the person on help available at the VA and community.
  • Share the National Domestic Violence Hotline* 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE)
  • Share the Veteran’s Crisis Line with them : 1-800-273-8255 and press 1 or TTY 1-800-799-4889.

Additional Resources:


For more information or assistance, contact your local Intimate Partner Violence Assistance Program, Primary Care Social Worker or other Provider. Women Veterans can also ask for the Women Veterans Program Manager.

Not yet a patient at VA? - Apply Now

Find help in the community by calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233 (SAFE) or TTY 1−800−787−3224.

* Links with an asterisk (*) next to them will take you outside the VA website. VA is not responsible for the content of the linked site. This link does not constitute endorsement of the non-VA website or its sponsor.

Safety Tip

If you believe someone maybe monitoring the websites you visit. Call or Visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline or Call: 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-32249 (TTY.)

Click here to leave this site - immediately!
National Domestic Violence Hotline - This Link will take you outside the VA website. VA is not responsible for the content of this linked site. This link does not constitute endorsement of the non-VA website or its sponsor.
This safety planning guide will help you think about things you can do to stay safe.
FIND A LOCAL IPVAP COORDINATOR

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