Am I Being Harmed?

If you are in danger and want law enforcement to respond, call 911.

To talk to someone confidentially for support and information, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or TTY 1-800-787-3224. 

To find your local sexual abuse victim service program, call the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network at 1-800-656-4673 (HOPE).

Is Someone Harming You?

If you feel you are being harmed or that someone is taking advantage of you, it is a good idea to get more information.  Older adults may be harmed by spouses, partners, adult children, or other family members, caregivers, or others. Older adults can experience physical, sexual, psychological, and emotional abuse, stalking, abandonment, exploitation, and neglect. Oftentimes several forms of abuse may be occurring at the same time. To read more about some signs that someone may be harming you, please click on the link below:

Am I Being Harmed?

The signs discussed in this resource are not the only forms of harm that can occur.  Each person’s experience is unique; you may be experiencing different types of harm. 

What Can You Do if You're Being Harmed?

You are not the only one who has experienced harm. Unfortunately, too many people are hurt later in life by spouses, partners, family members, caregivers, and others. If you are afraid or are being hurt and you think you need to make plans in case you need to leave your current living situation, Resources are available to help you think about what to do. To read about some ideas that may be important to consider, please click on the link below:  

Checklist for Leaving

Help is Available

In addition to creating your own checklist, programs and individuals are available to listen and work with you as you decide what you want to do next.  Various programs offer different types of support so you will need contact agencies in your community to learn more about what specific assistance they provide. 

To learn more about available resources and to talk with someone confidentially about your experience please contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline.  Another resource to help you find local resources is NCALL’s National Abuse in Later Life Directory.

 

NCALL's National Abuse in Later Life Directory

 

Create A Safety Plan

Whether you choose to remain in your current situation or choose to leave temporarily or permanently, consider contacting an advocate who can help you create a safety plan. Safety planning is a process to help you think through options prior to a dangerous incident so you can plan your next steps. Many advocates specialize in safety planning and can provide you with information about what you are experiencing and offer information about services and support. 

For some tips on what to consider when thinking about creating a safety plan and a sample of what a safety plan looks like, please click the links below: 

Safety Planning Tips

Personalized Safety Plan

Older Survivor Stories

Many older adults who are being harmed display amazing personal strength and courage during difficult times. Too often these older survivors are being harmed by persons they care about or love. Many older survivors encounter significant barriers, such as lack of economic resources or affordable housing, which limit the options available to them when they are trying to live free from abuse.

Some older survivors are speaking out about their experiences to help other potential victims know that they are not alone and help is available.

To hear directly from some older adults that were being harmed, please click any of the following links:

“The Day That Changed My Life Forever” by Mary

I Can't Believe I'm Free (Pat)

Lois & Sam's Story

Miss Mary's Story

A Mother Never Gives Up Hope (Anne)

 

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