By Katie Foley
Life is full of unexpected changes and we often recognize those changes when it happens to those closest to us. What happens if you start noticing negative changes in a loved ones life? What are the signs of these changes?
Maybe you’ve noticed bruises on a friend or maybe they are constantly negative and showing you a significant change in their confidence. Maybe you’ve even noticed a change in their attitude or personality.
Their scarf collection is growing. They don’t laugh anymore. They are always checking their phone and letting their significant other know where they are.
While you thought they were always happy, you’re now beginning to question if something is wrong. Reality: domestic violence and abuse can happen to anyone. Sometimes, though, problems are pushed under the table or even denied.
Noticing the signs of an abusive relationship can be the first step to ending it. If you immediately think of someone in your life that relates to the points below then we encourage you to take the first step and reach out. There is available help and no one should ever live in fear.
Change in habits
When someone becomes obsessive about updating their partner on their location or daily activities this may be a sign that something is wrong. Other changes in daily routine and habits may bring light to something more going on behind closed doors. For example, your sister used to always put on makeup, get manicures, and workout. Now, all she does is sulk around and seems to have lost self-confidence. It is possible those changes are the result of domestic violence.
Constantly on edge
Do they fear their partner all of the time? Do they try everything in their power to never make their partner angry? Are they always complaining of never doing anything right? If answering “yes,” then it is time to step in and help them realize that they aren’t helpless, but that they are worthy of help.
Bruises. Scratches. Black Eyes. Jammed Fingers. Lacerations.
Above are “obvious” giveaways of physical abuse. Realize that abusers are smart, so these wounds could possibly be in hidden places. Take notice and start asking questions.
They’re not communicating
While this may seem superficial, it’s important to start noticing how they are communicating is it via text, phone calls, and social media. If they no longer are on social media or even less active – you may have your first sign. If you also notice that your loved one has a “phone manager” and isn’t texting you as often or maybe isn’t even allowed to talk to certain people, then it might be time to talk.
“You’ll never find someone else that will love you.”
The lie above is a sign that your loved one is being manipulated to stay in a bad situation. If you are noticing that they are forcing smiles and laughs – then it could be time to take action. The more they are faking and lying, the more they will be manipulated to a point of serious abuse.
If you or a loved one are a victim of feeling these emotions – it’s time to take back your life. At Beacon of Hope Crisis Center, we are committed to breaking the cycle while empowering victims and survivors to take back their life. From providing emotional support to safety planning, let us be your advocate.
For more information, contact our hotline at: (317) 731-6140.
By Andrea Jenkins, MSW, LCSW
Beacon of Hope Crisis Center offers in-house counseling services which removes many barriers for our clients including access to services, inability to pay for services, and incapability to self-advocate for needs. Our team can meet the needs of the women, men and families who contact us for services with competency and grace. During this challenging time, many of our clients are ready to receive support from a counselor to resolve presenting problems, experience personal growth, address problematic behaviors, and identify goals with potential solutions.
Counseling is a vital component to healing after being in an abusive relationship. It gives the person an opportunity to tell their emotionally filled story in a safe, non-judgmental place. For most, this is the first time they have been able to tell their story in its entirety including the role they played in the relationship. This courageous act is where internal healing begins. Coming to counseling for some is the first thing that they have done for themselves in years. In therapy, they can see their strength to move through their journey of hurt which allows them to go from victim to survivor.
Beacon of Hope Crisis Center counseling services provide individuals and families an opportunity to visualize and work toward the future they want which for most is simply to be HAPPY AND SAFE.
By Sandra K. Ziebold
The Impact of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault on Businesses is financially mind-boggling and the toll on individuals and team culture is horrific. Listening and having conversations with corporate boards, executive management teams, lunch-n-learns with corporate employees, awareness speaking engagements and community events are all a vital part of how we educate and assist the businesses in our community. Beacon of Hope raises public awareness about domestic and sexual violence and the tremendous emotional, physical and economic cost of this violence. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the cost of intimate partner rape, physical assault and stalking totals $5.8 billion each year for direct medical and mental health care services and lost productivity from paid work and household chores. Of this, total productivity losses accounted for nearly $1.8 billion in the United States in 1995. When updated in 2003 the cost of intimate partner rape, physical assault and stalking was more than $8.3 billion. It is now 2016 and we know from listening and working with corporations that this problem does impact financials and we want to help you with that and save lives in the process. Contact Beacon of Hope Crisis Center today to schedule conversation that makes a difference in your company.
By: Sandra Ziebold, Executive Director/CEO
Individual empowerment is a process of development for each individual person. It involves developing skills and abilities and a more positive definition of ones self.
Achieving individual empowerment is realized by having a better feeling about yourself, a sense of more self-respect and self-esteem.
If you want a simple mantra - Individual Empowerment means 'becoming powerful'.
To become personally empowered...We must be able to answer...what are my personal values, what are my skills and goals... then do I want, really want, personal empowerment and am I motivated and prepared to adjust my behavior in order to achieve my goals.
If you or someone you know is in need of personal empowerment to move beyond circumstances caused by domestic violence into a fully realized state of independence and sustainability Beacon of Hope is here for you!
Beacon of Hope Crisis Center works directly with clients needing services for domestic violence and sexual assault.
This blog is about our domestic and sexual violence crisis center, Beacon of Hope. We hope you find it full of helpful information, motivation, creativity, serious facts and positivity. We hope that it will help you know what is happening in our center, in our community and with our events. We hope you follow our blog in support of our organization and our mission.
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