What to take when you're leaving an abusive relationship

Mar 15, 2019

Leaving an abusive relationship can be high-risk for a victim of Family Violence. This is a time when violence is likely to escalate and people often only have a small window of opportunity to leave.

If you are leaving a violent relationship, it’s important to make a plan to ensure you can leave safely and quickly. The best way to develop a plan is with the help of a support service such as Safe Choices, and trusted family and friends. This list details the things you will need to take when leaving a violent relationship. By packing these things, you reduce the need to return to the person and place where the abuse occurs.

This is a list of what to take when leaving a violent relationship:

  • Passports and birth certificates for you and your children (or certified copies of each)
  • Visas
  • Health records for you and your children
  • Medications and any extra prescriptions for you and your children
  • Phones (if possible, have a spare prepaid mobile so you can’t be tracked or monitored through phone bills or call logs)
  • Phone chargers
  • Phone numbers for family members, support services, doctors etc
  • Spare clothes for all members of the family if possible
  • Comfort items for children such as small toys or a double up of things that a child might be attached to such as blanket or dummy etc.
  • Bank details including PIN
  • Tax file number
  • Mortgage papers or rental contracts
  • Copy of rates
  • Phone and internet serial numbers so that you can cancel internet and phone services

It may not be practical to take all these things at once, as it may arouse suspicion with the perpetrator of the violence. However, it is important to have these items covered as it reduces the need to contact the perpetrator after you’ve left. You can organise some of these items beforehand and hide them in your car or leave them with trusted friends and family members. If possible, hide a spare set of car keys as well, in case your partner takes your normal set of keys. Some things, such as certified copies of important documents, can be arranged prior to leaving, and original copies returned so that the perpetrator of the violence doesn’t suspect you are planning to leave.

The most important thing when leaving a violent relationship is your safety. Safe Choices can help make individualised safety plans and assist you in leaving a violent relationship if you feel ready to do so. We will work alongside you to help you choose the right path for you and your children. We recognise that everyone has their own experience and will provide information and options that best meet your needs. If you want to talk to someone about your experience of Family Violence, or receive further information, get in contact with us here.

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Maryam Amiri

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