Getting her into a short-term shelter or safe

Getting
out of a domestically violent relationship is never easy. Most times, the victim
will believe their situation will change or they are too afraid of what their abuser
might do if he discovers she is trying to leave. Fortunately, there are plenty
of support networks available for abused women including emergency hotlines,
shelters, even job education programs, legal aid, and childcare. In examining
Marta’s case, the services I would arrange for her today would be to provide
her with an alternative living arrangement including an out-of-home placement with
one of her relatives or family foster home for the children. However, if Marta
is uncomfortable with separating from her children, I could enter her into a short-term
shelter or safe housing program, where the she will be offered support,
information and parenting resources.

If
Marta decides that she does not want to return home she will now need a longer-term
housing arrangement, if needed she will get relocation assistance upon her exit
from shelter. Marta will also need counseling and advocacy for victims of
abuse, go through a health and behavioral assessment, while in the process
learn healthy coping strategies when dealing with stress, anxiety, and
depression. Marta mentioned that she has never held a job since the first year
of her marriage due to her husband’s resentment towards her working. So, she
will need to attend an adult educational seminar, job training, to help her
develop financial literacy as well as joining a peer support program. Marta
will more likely trust and relate with someone who has faced a similar
situation?? they know what your pain feels like, both emotionally and
physically and will be able to give Marta practical information.    

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In
addition to peer support, Marta can also participate in a support group for
parents going through a specific problem, in her case domestic violence, and
get together to support each other. This socialization will help Marta make new
friends and become more part of the community. Individuals in a community work
better together. Further, I can find a workshop on parenting skills that would
greatly benefit her family, now that she is a single parent. In my continued
planning, I will need to make sure Marta is able to maintain her safe housing
arrangement to prevent her from returning to her abuser due to financial need
and homelessness. After Marta becomes well-adjusted to her new situation I will
now prepare her for a move to more independent living. A safe and affordable
housing unit where she will be provided with a security deposit, first and last
month’s rent, and/or new furniture to help her and the children transition into
their new home.

The
children will be referred to a crisis intervention program for children exposed
to domestic violence, this intervention includes groups, individual therapy,
and dyadic treatment with their parent. An essential constituent of
intervention with all children is to first create a support and strengthening
relationship between the child and the parent. For most children, like Billy
and his younger siblings, a strong relationship with his mother can be the key
factor in helping him heal from the effects of domestic violence. The choice of
intervention will vary due to their age, the nature and severity of their
traumatic reactions and circumstances of the family.

In
either a group or individual session, the treatment will provide the children
with valuable information about domestic violence and common childhood responses,
which will help normalize their situation and lessen their sense of isolation. Billy,
the oldest child who has had a difficult time in dealing with the experience
will benefit from individual sessions, where he will be able to express his
feelings more openly. The children will need educational services for both pre-school
children and school-aged children. Such as participating after school and
summer school programs (field trips, events etc.) to develop new interests,
hobbies and make new friends.  

One
builds on their strengths by acknowledging them. Most battered women cannot
leave their situation, often because they lack the means to escape. Like Marta,
who had suffered many years of abuse and had nothing when she left home, has
found the strength to protect herself and her children by choosing to leave the
abuse and seek help. In the years, she remained in the abusive relationship,
Marta acquired certain mechanisms that helped her cope with her circumstances.
She has courage, motivation, and an inculpable attitude; strengths that can be
used to improve her situation.

The
first of Marta’s strengths to be identified is the courage she demonstrated by
using her resources?? the case management unit article she carried in her
wallet, to report the abuse to someone like myself; a difficult step for abuse
victims. It also took Marta a lot of courage to leave behind her home, family
and friends in order to preserve her well-being. Another one of Marta’s
strengths is her inculpable attitude. Due to fear and low self-esteem, abuse
victims will blame themselves for the violent behavior administered by their
partners. However, Marta did not blame herself and understood that her
husband’s violent behavior was not her fault. Marta has even mentioned she
sought out counseling, so she is competent enough to know not to make any
excuses for his actions and abuse of any kind should not be tolerated.  

Marta’s
motivation began when she realized the need to regain self-control and control
over her life. With motivation, she can learn to overcome helplessness, which can
lead to depression, defective problem-solving, and loss of self. Motivation
will be essential in the healing process, as she moves forward. When making
decisions about the client’s safety, it is essential to assent the risk of
future violence. In this case, some of the safety issues one considers are the
risks?? of the client being hurt or killed, even stalked by her abuser. Considering
Marta has a prior history of intimacy with her abuser this will provide his
stalking with an array of tactics to use during the stalking. To note a
majority of domestic violence homicides happen while the victims are trying to
leave, or after they have left. Another safety issue that arises is the
children. Most times, much of the abuse is aimed at/or involves the control
over the shared children after the separation.

Since
Marta is the primary caregiver of the children, her abusive partner can use the
children to exert control over her by threatening the children’s lives, if the
father turns it into a legal battle and wins custody over the kids, he can
mistreat the children to punish Marta and could begin physically abusing them. Marta’s
abuser could also use manipulation by threatening to harm third party members??
her family and friends, if she does not return home. With those safety issues
in mind, it will best to report this situation to the authorities, and put in
place an emergency order of protection for the time being. I
will continue to monitor this case by arranging to meet with Marta twice a week
to keep track of her progress and make sure she is working toward her goals and
to be aware of any revisions or modifications that need to be made to the
service plan.   

I will also keep in
contact with the service providers using written reports to assure that the
services authorized are being implemented in accordance with individualized
care plan. With the physical and emotional abuse Marta and her children have
suffered, my primary concern was to provide the family with immediate access to
safety and services. Setting goals for the future will help Marta move past the
abuse and find closure. For the overall objective of these services is to stop
violence, implement safety, establish empowerment and healing for domestic
abuse survivors and their children. The next phases in Marta’s life aren’t
going to be easy but if she keeps fighting and taking those steps towards
freedom and recovery, she and her children will be able to have a life free of fear.
   

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