The holiday season can be extremely stressful—finances are strained, we spend more time at home, kids become impatient, alcohol use increases, and tempers can be stretched to the limit. Sometimes, these combinations can lead abusers to take their frustrations and irritations out on others inside and outside of the home.
We chatted with Global Women’s Empowerment Network (G.W.E.N’s) co-founder, Tess Cacciatore, for tips to finding the signs and taking the appropriate precautions to prevent us from such dangers.
“New Year’s is the biggest holiday of concern for domestic violence abuse. Rates increase by a flustering 32 percent during this time,” shares the founder.”
In efforts to adopt safety guidelines for the holidays, G.W.E.N. shares signs to watch out for on New Years eve and precautions everyone must take to ensure a safe time.
What are the signs of danger?
Watch out for increase of short tempers; whether you have your own personal pressures and a temper that seems to get triggered more easily. Notice if people in your families have an increase temper. If so, keep your distance.
Watch out for the increase in alcohol intake. This is the time that most people become excessively dependent on depressants. Jobs that are weather conditions (like construction, landscaping,etc) tend to be slow around the holidays, so that work time often tends to be replaced with heavy alcohol intake. Be smart!
Be aware of what’s going on with family and friends. Know if someone recently lost a job or is having financial difficulties. They are the ones who tend to fall into deep depression over the holidays. Be compassionate and aware.
How do I prevent myself from danger occurring outside and inside my own home?
Identify easy exits no matter where you are; whether it’s the window that provides quick access to outside or exits in your local mall. When you’re out try not to walk alone through parking decks, or any garages.
Set up the free GWEN Alert App, which provides users in distress with immediate emergency support. In case of an emergency, the GWEN ALERT allows you to discreetly send a preset text message to up to five pre-programmed contacts (GWEN FIVE), simultaneously alerting them to the fact that you are in danger and signaling your GPS position.
If you find yourself in an abusive situation, find a safe shelter, hotline and/or a friends’ house. But be careful to do your research on computers and phones that your abuser does not have access to.