Getting yourself out of an abusive situation can be challenging. Many obstacles can make you feel trapped in the relationship. Many people feel this way and try multiple times to leave the relationship.

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, people typically leave abusive relationships seven times before completely breaking it off. This statistic emphasizes how difficult and dangerous it can be to escape an abuser. Escaping the situation is possible and essential for you to regain control of your life.

Four obstacles you can overcome

Abusers will generally try to gain control or power over their victims. This power dynamic can make it even more challenging to leave. Abusers will emotionally and mentally manipulate you into thinking you can’t succeed without them. This is all ploy so they can keep their perceived control over you. Overcoming these common obstacles can help you start your new life:

  • Deciding where to go: Going to a close relative or friend’s house may be your best bet after leaving the relationship. A safe place like this will let you decompress and figure out what to do next. If that is not an option, you could also head to a domestic violence shelter. The shelter generally provides food and other benefits at no cost. It is worth noting that staying in a shelter is not a long-term option. Because of this, most shelters will help you find a job and even train you.
  • Staying safe: Maintaining your safety should be your top priority when figuring out an escape plan. Leaving is also one of the most dangerous times for abuse victims. Your ex could start looking for you and could become violent in order to stop you from leaving. Writing down a checklist of items to bring can help you leave quickly and efficiently.
  • Overcoming a lack of funds: Many abusers want to be in constant control. To satisfy this need, they might not let you have access to any money. Fortunately, domestic violence shelters will take you in at no cost. They will even help you set up transportation to get to the shelter.

Getting out of an abusive relationship is one of the most challenging obstacles to overcome. You may still have feelings for this person, but your mental and physical safety is the most important thing. Removing yourself from this situation will let you regain control of your life.

If you need legal help during this situation, reaching out to an attorney can help. Some domestic violence shelters also have lawyers who can help at discounted rates or free of charge.