If this is an emergency, call 9-1-1.
Talk to an information and referral counsellor or get more information by calling the 24/7 Victim Support Line at 1-888-579-2888, or 416-314-2447 , or chat online Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern Time. The multilingual line provides services across Ontario, in most languages spoken in the province.
To find online information about services for victims of crime, follow these simple steps. Enter a community or city name or postal code.
If your spouse or partner or a family member is committing violent or threatening behaviour towards you or another family member, including a child you should:
Create a safety plan for you and your children. To find support services in your community who can help you create a safety plan, visit the following websites:
Things to do when preparing to leave:
If you must leave in a hurry, try to take:
If you are looking for information about services for women who have experienced violence, visit the Ontario Women's Issues Directorate.
In the early stages, a victim often does not realize she or he is in an abusive relationship. By the time the victim recognizes the signs, there are usually many barriers to leaving in place. Barriers may include:
It is important to talk to someone you trust and your doctor. In addition to talking to someone, it may be useful to find out more information about what you are experiencing.
While any change to our regular day or routine can affect our mental health, this situation is doubly challenging because news of the pandemic is virtually inescapable, and there’s no clear end date. Right now, being worried and anxious is perfectly understandable. We can break down what’s happening by looking at the psychology of anxiety. There are three big predictors of how stressful something is going to be: (1) how predictable it is, (2) how much we can control it, and (3) how important it is to us.
With COVID-19, we’ve got a situation that checks all three boxes. There’s a lot we don’t know, we have relatively weak controls (e.g., hand washing, physical distancing), and it’s really important ꟷ even lethal in the worst case. So we shouldn’t be surprised at our heightened reaction. (Mental Health Commission of Canada)
Each person will react differently to situations, what you need to understand isn’t what’s “normal” but rather what’s healthy for you. Keep an eye on how you’re feeling or what might trigger negative responses. The Mental Health Commission of Canada also has a great resource, called the mental health continuum model. It’s a simple tool that presents a series of emotional, cognitive, behavioural, physical, and substance use indicators. These indicators can be used to measure positive-through-deteriorating-to-poor mental health, and changes in personal functioning. Colour-coded as green (healthy), yellow (reacting), orange (injured) and red (ill), the indicators are paired with their corresponding colours to help you understand when it might be time to ask for help. (Mental Health Commission of Canada)
"Mental Health is not Mental Illness" Lesline McEwan, RP, MA, CAMF Copyright © 1999 Prevent and Address Gender Based Violence - All Rights Reserved.