Isolation is a method used by abusers to keep control over the victim. Forbidding their partner to have friends, talk on the phone, leave the house, leave the house alone, read books, and use the computer are all common tactics to isolate. In order for someone to escape their abusive relationship they need to gather information, educate themselves, and find resources for help. It’s imperative to get another voice in their head besides their abuser. This is a timely endeavor. Most victims aren’t allowed that kind of time out of the house without their where-abouts being known and approved of. A victim usually has to account for every minute of their day. Social media sites are offering good support and recovery suggestions for victims who might possible only have a few minutes at a time to seek out help. There is a wealth of information on the internet.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline http://www.thehotline.org has an on-line presence. Another helpful site is Love is Respect http://www.loveisrespect.org/ which is particularly helpful for teens and young adults. Psychology Today http://www.psychologytoday.com/ and Web MD http://www.webmd.com/ are two trusted resources that have data and links to educate about abuse tactics, styles, and recovery advice.
A valuable supply of support can be found on Facebook. There are pages dedicated to helping victims of abuse. Overcoming Abusive Relationships http://www.facebook.com/overcomingabusiverealtionships by administrator Rhonda B. offers a unique page. Finding the resources she needed to overcome her situation in God is something she is very open about. “I don’t know what I would do without God, he is definitely my rock!” Rhonda offers inspiration to those who have already found God to be their strength as well has encouragement for those who are still seeking strength and are not sure where to draw it from.
A message that she works hard to get out there is that staying in an abusive relationship for the sake of the children is not a good idea. Rhonda shares, “I feel that pretending that things are OK when they are NOT is only going to set the children up for the SAME cycle of abuse. Had I known that my mother’s second marriage was unhealthy perhaps I would have been aware of what to look for. So those parents that think they are protecting their children from the truth are truly not protecting them in the long run.”
These Facebook support pages generally are administrated by survivors of abuse. They are not professional counselors or licensed advocates. The experiences that they have gone through makes it easier for a victim to feel safe to share. A sufferer gets validation and understanding. Overcoming Abusive Relationships shares “ I’m still a work in progress but here is an analogy– Would you want a coach that only studied about working out to teach you how to get in shape or would you rather have one that suffered and went through the pain themselves to guide you?”
Working with a counselor is an important part of recovering from abuse. But building an army of supporters is so important. However sometimes a sufferer of abuse has to start small and be very secretive. Social media offers an opportunity to do that.
If you are still living with your abuser keep in mind computers may be being monitored. Libraries offer computers for public use. Another option would be accessing the internet from a friend or family member’s house. Safety should always be top priority.