Are You and Your Baby Safe?

You might not be, if there is domestic violence in your life. Here are some questions to help you know if you're being abused:

Does your partner hurt you with words?

  • Does he insult you and make you feel worthless?
  • Does he put you down in front of other people?

Does he hurt you physically?

  • Does he push, slap, hit, punch, kick, choke or beat you?
  • Does he make you do sexual things you don't want to do or hurt you during sex?

Is he in charge of everything?

  • Does he tell you who you can and cannot see or talk to?
  • Does he control all the family's money?

Does he scare you?

  • Does he lose his temper, get very jealous or break things?
  • Does he threaten to hurt you, the kids, pets or himself?

Victims of domestic abuse are not always physically hurt. If you answered "yes" to any of the questions above, you might be abused. You or your children could be in danger.

You are not alone.
You are not to blame.
You do not
deserve to be abused.

Did you know that domestic violence sometimes starts or gets worse during pregnancy?

And you're not the only one getting hurt:

  • A woman who is abused during pregnancy may be more likely to have a miscarriage, infections, bleeding, anemia and other health problems.These can affect both her and her baby.
  • She is twice as likely to have a low birthweight baby.
  • Most men who hit their partners also beat their children. Some also sexually abuse children.
  • Kids whose fathers beat their mothers can suffer from health problems, sleep problems, anger, guilt, fear and anxiety.
  • Each year, more than 1,000 children in the U.S. die from injuries caused by their parents, guardians or others.

You and your baby
do not deserve to be treated this way.
You have a right to be safe.
Help is available.

What type of help do you need? The services listed below are available in most communities. Anything you say is confidential.

Hotlines: a counselor will talk to you on the phone and give you information, or just listen. She or he will also tell you places near you to call or go to for more help, if you want it. Hotline numbers can be found at the end of this brochure.

Support groups:you can talk with other women who have gone through what you're going through (a support group). It can help you feel less alone and you can share ideas and information on safety.>

Services for children: many programs have counseling and support for kids to help them understand what is happening. It gives them a chance to talk about their feelings.

Advocacy and other support services: someone can help you through the "system." This person is a domestic violence advocate. Advocacy services often include help finding legal advice, counseling, health care, housing, a job and social services.

Police and the courts: police can help in many ways, such as getting you and your children to a safe place in an emergency. Family and criminal courts can help by issuing an order of protection or by deciding custody, visitation or child support.

Shelters: most counties have shelters and safe homes where you and your children can stay. Shelters can help you get many of the services listed above.

You are important.

No woman deserves to be abused. No one "asks for it," and no one should have to live in fear. You owe it to your children to keep them - and yourself - safe.

You are not alone. Help is available.

New York State Hotlines

  • Adult Domestic Violence: (24 hours, 7 days a week)
    • English 1-800-942-6906
    • Spanish 1-800-942-6908
  • National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse:
    • 1-800-342-7472 Prevention information and parent help-line
  • Office of Children & Family Services
    • 1-800-342-3720 To report child abuse

State of New York Department of Health

Publication 4605