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VHA Social Work
Intimate Partner Violence Assistance Program (IPVAP) - VETERANS & PARTNERS - What Can I Do?
Experiencing IPV can be as damaging to your emotional health as it is to your physical health, if not more so. Below you will find suggestions that may be useful in supporting your emotional well-being.
- Tell someone what you’re experiencing. If you’re not ready to speak to someone in person, you can talk over the phone or by text. Try the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE) or TTY 1-800-787-3224 or try their online chat at National Domestic Violence Hotline.*
- Just as sharing with someone what you are experiencing can be a powerful first step, learning about the types of intimate partner violence and the characteristics of healthy, unhealthy, and high risk relationship behaviors can be another turning point.
- Understanding the differences between these behaviors can help you to recognize behaviors that you may not be aware are considered abusive and remind yourself that you do not deserve an unhealthy or abusive relationship.
- Have your partner’s words or actions led you to question your self-worth or second guess your experience? Are you feeling depressed, anxious, or struggling with unhealthy ways of coping? Consider how your relationship experiences may be affecting your emotional health and your options for support.
- Try a Domestic Violence Support Group or Individual or Group Therapy. Get help connecting with resources, planning for your safety, and improving your emotional well-being. Contact your local Intimate Partner Violence Assistance Program Coordinator, the National Domestic Violence Hotline*, or your local domestic violence shelter* to locate a group near you.