Special Populations



In a healthy relationship:

  • Your partner respects you and your individuality.
  • You both feel safe being open and honest.
  • Your partner supports you and your choices even when they disagree with you.
  • Both of you have equal say and respected boundaries.
  • Your partner understands that you need to study or hang out with friends or family.
  • You can communicate your feelings without being afraid of negative consequences.

A healthy partner is not excessively jealous and does not make you feel guilty when you spend time with family and friends. A healthy partner encourages you to achieve your goals and does not resent your accomplishments.


10 Warning Signs of Abuse:

  • Checks your cell phone or email without your permission
  • Constantly puts you down
  • Extreme jealousy or insecurity
  • Explosive temper
  • Isolating you from family or friends
  • Makes false accusations
  • Mood swings
  • Physically hurts you in any way
  • Possessive
  • Tells you what to do

Not all relationships involve physical abuse. Just because you aren’t being physically hurt does not mean your relationship is healthy.

Safety Planning for Schools and Teens

Having a safety plan should be considered whether or not a restraining order has been issued by the court.

  • Designate a school official to help develop, implement and oversee plan
  • Make schedule changes as needed
  • Review and revise school arrival for each student
    • Time
    • Entrances
    • Transportation
    • With whom
  • Lockers — reassign if needed
  • Route changes
  • Lunch adjustments
  • Review and revise school departure for each students
    • Time
    • Exits
    • Transportation
    • With whom
  • Designate one staff person for each student with whom she/he feels comfortable for “check-in” and support
  • Identify additional staff for support
  • List other staff with whom to share the plan
  • Identify a support network of peers for the victim
  • Determine additional special conditions or potential problem areas and how best to address them (e.g. extra curricular activities, school events, etc.)


NOTE: Following the rules of the restraining order is the responsibility of the defendant; a victim cannot violate the restraining order.

Things I Can Do To Help Keep Myself Safe

Every day, I will…

  • Carry my cell phone and important telephone numbers with me at all times.
  • Keep in touch with someone I trust about where I am or what I am doing.
  • Stay out of isolated places and avoid walking around alone.
  • Avoid places where my abuser or his/her friends and family are likely to be.
  • Not speak to my abuser, or if unavoidable, make sure there are people around in case the situation becomes uncomfortable or dangerous.
  • Call 911 if I feel my safety is at risk.
  • Consider getting a protective order so that I’ll have legal support in keep my abuser away.
  • Consider enrolling in self-defense classes if available.
  • Remember that the abuse is not my fault and that I deserve a safe and healthy relationship.

In my social life, I will…

  • Ask my friends to keep their cell phones with them while they are with me in case we get separated and I need help.
  • Avoid malls, hang-outs, parties, grocery stores, movie theaters, restaurants, etc. that my abuser frequents.
  • Avoid going out alone, especially at night.
  • Be aware of how to leave safely in case of an emergency wherever I go.
  • Leave if I feel uncomfortable in a situation, no matter what my friends are doing.
  • Spend time with people who make me feel safe, supported, and good about myself.

Online and with my cell phone, I will…

  • Not say or do anything online that I wouldn’t say or do in person.
  • Set all my online profiles to be as private as they can be.
  • Save and keep track of any abusive, threatening or harassing comments, posts or texts.
  • Never give my password to anyone.
  • Change my usernames, email addresses, and/or cell phone number if the abuse/harassment does not stop.
  • Not answer calls from unknown, blocked, or private numbers.
  • Ask phone company to block my abuser’s phone number from calling my phone.
  • NOT communicate with my abuser using any type of technology, because any form of communication can be recorded and possibly used against me in the future.

Resources Specific to Teens

Love is RespectNational Teen Dating Violence Helpline

Break the Cycle

Futures Without Violence