Self Care and Safety Planning for the Holidays
The winter holidays can be a stressful time. Between hunting for the right gifts, planning for parties and travel, and spending extra time with relatives, it can be hard not to feel the strain sometimes.
In this hectic and potentially tense atmosphere, it is important that we take care of ourselves as well as our loved ones. These self care tips can help relieve stress during the holiday season and beyond.
Unfortunately, for many people, the pressure of the holiday season is not just a time of increased stress but increased danger. Financial strain, alcohol consumption, tense family relations, and increased time together with an abuser on vacation can exacerbate on-going emotional and physical abuse. In these situations, personal calming tactics are not always enough.
While calls to the National Domestic Violence Hotline and the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) are reported to be significantly lower than average on Thanksgiving and Christmas, both organizations receive a dramatic rise in calls in the weeks after New Years. This suggests that many abuse victims delay seeking help until after the holidays, often in the hope of keeping the peace or maintaining stability at a time when pressure is high for a family to stay together. If this is a concern, developing a safety plan in advance may help reduce risks should a dangerous situation arise.
A safety plan is a strategy to minimize risk and make use of any resources or support available in the event of an incident of abuse. Safety plans are developed in response to an individual’s specific situation.
If you’re concerned about your own or your loved ones’ physical or emotional well being over the holidays, please call our hotline at 208.343.7025. You can also contact our Victim Advocate at 208.577.4498 to schedule a safety planning appointment.
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