Dare to Create – 5 ways to support someone who’s experiencing abuse

DCB7C710-0D82-4B76-ACCD-E69A1C8335A3Alexas_Fotos – pixabay.com  

Hello survivors, and welcome to another Dare to Create article from #ProjectLifeQuality. Your creative corner, where we discuss our topic of the week and where you are provided with a suggestion to take away with you.

This will be something designed to encourage, and motivate you to explore your thoughts through the use of the arts. PLQ continues to explore the topic of emotional abuse this week. Today’s article focuses on how we can help someone affected by abuse. You’ll find more about this below the challenge.

Dare to Create – the challenge

939488F6-BE98-4EF3-B086-4236B406A8CA.jpegImage source top and bottom left – typorama.com


The challenge – write a poem

* Write a poem expressing how as a survivor of abuse, others could support you better.

* Share with us what experience has taught you.

* Help us to better understand.

Remember, the poem doesn’t have to rhyme to be poetical. Just think about what it is you wish to express, jot down words and feelings then pull the words together to make us feel it. Help us to feel empathy and understanding for your situation. Teach us what we can do to support you more effectively.

Please share with us. Don’t forget to tag @projectlifequality #plq.

pexels-photo-629586Image – Typorama.com

How to support someone you care about

The scenario

A friend or relative confides in you that the bruises on their wrists were caused by their __________ (Insert the relevant relationship ie girlfriend/ husband/grandparent/ uncle/mother…)

You are frightened for their safety.

You want them to leave the situation.

What can you do?

It’s never easy to learn that someone you care about, is trapped in an abusive situation. It can be tempting to tell them they must get out straight away, but this can make an overwhelming situation even harder for the victim of the abuse.

The first thing to know is that you can never make someone leave. This is a decision the victim of the abuse must take – but it doesn’t mean that there’s nothing you can do.

5 ways to support someone you care about

1. Listen without judgment. It’s very hard for someone who’s never been a victim of abuse to understand why a person may remain in an abusive situation, but there are many reasons this might happen. Listening is both supportive and the only way to learn about the reality of their situation. Build trust and understanding so that you can help them.

They may not recognize the relationship they’re in as abusive if it doesn’t normally include violence and physical harm. Do your research so that you can help them to see the abuse for what it is when the time is right.

  • Financial or material abuse
  • Physical abuse
  • Neglect and acts of omission
  • Sexual abuse
  • Psychological abuse
  • Organisational abuse
  • Discriminatory abuse
  • Self-neglect
  • Domestic abuse
  • Modern slavery

Click the link below for more on this.


Elizabeth R. Lombardo, Ph.D. – psychologist and author.
Image  – Typorama.com


     3. Offer to store their important documents in a safe place. Make copies if it’s not possible to get the originals. Failing that, take good photos of them.

  • Birth/adoption certificates for them and any children/dependants.
  • Marriage certificate.
  • Financial paperwork – details about house ownership, mortgage, bank account and life insurance. Bank transaction records. Receipts showing significant outgoings or items paid for by the victim. Wage slips, incoming amounts, and details on benefits they’re receiving personally or on behalf of their dependents.
  • Store clear photos of the victim, dependents (adults and children), and the abuser – for identification purposes.

4. Keep a record of incidents, injuries, and actions. 

  • Take photos of injuries,
  • Store texts/emails received from the victim of abuse and abuser/s.
  • Make note of anything relevant, that may help if a solicitor, paramedics, police or abuse support worker are needed. Details such as significant dates and medications prescribed for depression, anxiety or injuries.

5. Help them to create a safe escape.

  • Devise a code word system whereby your friend/relative can alert you if they need immediate help. Make it simple, easy to remember and be absolutely clear about what it means. I know firsthand, how important and helpful this can be.
  • Help them create an Escape Plan. Plan the best time and way to get out fast. Rehearse it. https://www.womensaid.org.uk/the-survivors-handbook/making-a-safety-plan/
  • Help them create an escape bag. This contains medications, a spare phone and top-up card, money, clothing, the essentials they’d need if fleeing to a refuge or other safe place. This must be stored where it will not be found by the abuser. I stored a friend’s essentials in our loft, so they’d be available when she got out.
  • Encourage them to set up a new bank account in their name alone, so the abuser is unaware of it and has no access to it.


Remember to get the consent of your friend/relative, before taking photos or removing documents. Explain why you believe it is necessary, in advance.

In an emergency, always call 999!


Considering this week’s subject and creative challenge, I’d also like you to take a look at the following.

Further information

  • A TEDx video explaining the cathartic value of writing poetry from Daniel Tysdal.


Be the person you want to be!


Rebecca Goldthorpe
PLQ Creative Coach and Journalist

A Secret Letter to a stranger – The Art of Finding Hope Through Dark Times

Each Monday, our inspirational writer Melodic Rose will have random letter posted in the streets of Bergen. Hopefully someone who need’s it will find it, and read it, and hopefully it will inspire them to have a better day. This weeks letter were about Art and why you should create (E-Mail us if you want to post a letter in your city). Here is the original letter in all it’s entity











Melodic Rose (7)Melodic Rose (7)Melodic Rose (8)Melodic Rose (9)Melodic Rose (10)

Motivation with Kenyatta Mitchell – Emotional Abuse – Helping others

Helping others creates more than hope, it often sheds light on a path that they may have forgotten is there.

Those who often need the most help may not have the initial courage to261322_2160174092971_5829277_n ask for it. It is not until someone extends an open hand, that hope and possibility are reintroduced into that person’s life.

One of the hardest challenges for those who become victoriously over an abusive past is learning to become a beacon of light of hope for others who made need some direction on where to go. It’s during the process of giving back that we receive the greatest gift of all, and that is showing someone how important their worth is to themselves and to the world.

The next time you see someone that maybe having a bad day, even if your day may feel just as bad, pull up and chair and have a conversation with them about their journey and share yours as well. This interaction can be both therapeutic and inspirational, for anyone that is willing to help out those who need it.

Sometimes, the best way to start healing ourselves starts by helping others first.  Reach out, extended a hand, an


Kenyatta Mitchell
Project Life Quality Motivational Speaker



Educational Post: Surviving Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse is the attempt by one person to control another person by psychological methods as opposed to physical violence.

What is Emotional Abuse?

Examples of emotional abuse are demeaning and belittling another person, questioning their faithfulness, and threatening to harm oneself if the other person does not comply with the will of the abuser.

Emotional abuse is not just limited to intimate relationships. It can be found in the workplace, and at school, and in social situations. Any situation in which one person can seek to establish an improper degree of control over another person can be a situation in which there is emotional abuse.


What Happens To Survivors of Emotional Abuse?

Persons who suffer emotional abuse may suffer problems of low self-esteem. They are more likely to report eating disorders. They may become withdrawn. They may doubt their ability to obtain better treatment in a properly supportive relationship.

Surviving emotional abuse takes self-awareness and self-respect. The first step is not denying the existence of the emotional abuse. It is real and can affect your quality of life. Anyone can rationalize away abusive behavior, but it ought to be confronted.

~Christopher Andrew Balsz~

Surviving Emotional Abuse

The next step is to recognize that the survivor is not the problem. The abuser is deliberately using abuse to attempt to control the behavior of the person in the relationship.


whereas the survivor, often ends up covering the abuser’s own poor social skills. You are not to blame for this, and deserves so much better.


A survivor of emotional abuse should evaluate the relationship and whether it is better to sever the relationship altogether.

This will depend on the circumstances of the abuse. Take the workplace as an example, it is hard to avoid the abuser all together and you might be in a situation where you don’t know where to go. One thing to do is to try to distance yourself as much as possible, and not go into a direct conflict with the abuser but rather set firm boundaries and strictly communicate about work-related business. Write down all instances abuse occurs, in that way you can silently build up a case. The abuse might think they are superior but the truth is, you are being smart about the situation. Using the abusers’ inability to behave properly against him/her. It is possible to report the abuser whereas he/she can be made to leave. Otherwise, the survivor may have to sever ties with the abuser and end the relationship altogether. The key is to educate yourself on the subject on how to deal with an abuser. You can read a bit about it here

If you will not sever the relationship with the abuser, in a social or workplace setting, it is important to confront the abuser directly and firmly with appropriate boundaries for their behavior. It is important not to suffer the abuse because you wish to avoid being difficult. You are entitled to respect and dignity and the absence of abuse. The key, on the other hand, is how to approach the abuser. It is easy to get triggered, it is what they want. Don’t allow them that control. But take the time to read and find a plan for how to deal with the situation. Don’t feel bad for setting boundaries, it is your right to decided what is ok and not ok.

It may be helpful to seek professional guidance and counseling as to how to proceed in your exact situation. Again, you are not the problem, and you are entitled to stand up for yourself. A professional can provide situational advice that is relevant and useful to your circumstances.

Find a healthy relationship, in that we mean someone you can trust and take advice from. It may be necessary to sever the relationship with the abuser and find a workplace,

pexels-photo-722939romantic or social setting where you are treated with dignity and respect.  It is important to remember that fact and act on it. Move forward from your abusive situation into a lifestyle full of respect and caring relationships. Nothing is worth being scrutinised for. In a work relationship if you are afraid of the financial situation to try the tips stated above, while looking for a new job at the side, use that new outlet as a positive reinforcement being able to stay calm.

What If I See Emotional Abuse Happening to Someone Else?

If you witness someone else being the subject of emotional abuse, you have a powerful opportunity to become a support to them in their hour of crisis. Your caring and respect can help check the damage to self-respect and tendency to isolate that emotional abuse can create. It’s important to recognize your own limits, however, and perhaps the best thing you can do for your friend and yourself is recommend strongly that they seek professional guidance and counseling regarding their abusive situation. You cannot replace professional help and will find it very taxing to be asked to fill that role.

Now that you’re aware of emotional abuse and some ways to counter it, let’s get motivated to act on our self-awareness of our own objective value and promise!

You Are Beautiful

Christopher Andrew Balsz Jr
PLQ Motivator

JustCallMeLolli- A Survivor Blog: Help Someone Dealing with Emotional Abuse


friends-sitting-in-cafe-and-drinking-coffee.jpgPhoto on VisualHunt


Helping a someone that is struggling can be difficult at times. Other times it can be extremely rewarding. I believe there are two types of people who struggles; the ones that want help and the ones that only want to be validated.

Have you ever come across a person struggling so much that it doesn’t matter what you say to them-That they will reject your suggestions in order to make the right changes?

You can only do so much when that happens.

However, if you sense that someone really wants to change and are feeling that they find a difficult time coping, listen to them attentively. The following cues help reveal what they are trying to say to you:

  • If they describe the abuse experiences and instances with the abuser then they want to feel validated.
  • If they say they can’t do anything then they are actually saying this: I have been brainwashed by the abuser’s thoughts.
  • If they blame those who weren’t there to save them then they’ve had thoughts of revenge and probably don’t trust anyone.
  • If they talk excessively of how things were when he or she met the abuser and the nice things they have done to them then they are in denial that the abuser is never going to change unless they want to.

19402974878_e924a0572c_c.jpgPhoto credit: sinclair.sharon28 on Visual Hunt / CC BY

Show Empathy!

“Are you stupid, why won’t you break up?” “If I were you, I would’ve packed the first time he hit me.” “ Go cheat on him or her.”

One of the things that I’ve had the displeasure to encounter is the untactful manner that others have portrayed. Chances are this person is already sinking in condemnation and shame. They don’t need any more of it. Phrases stated in the quote above are not things that have been said to me, but I have heard people say this to victims.

This is destructive and unacceptable. I am not suggesting extending pity because pity is a prison. Pity actually disarms the person by declaring that they are so incompetent in doing anything for themselves that the only thing you can do is feel sorry for them. Whew! That was a long sentence. You may not exactly understand the situation because you are not in it, so don’t say “I understand” if you really don’t feel it. Sometimes the best way you can do is stay still and stay silent and ask:

how can I help you?

30644130256_3acc4f00e0_c.jpgPhoto credit: Dean Hochman on Visualhunt.com / CC BY


This is the part where things can get challenging. Not everyone that expresses their pain and bitterness wants to change. Be wise, before helping someone. You might put someone in further danger by trying to help them.

I remember years ago trying to help my friend. Let’s call her Zara, to protect her identity. Zara had a bad experience with my former classmate. She then started dating this person’s cousin. She had expressed to me how this new person in her life would get angry at times to the point where it made her feel fearful. She explained how this person pushed her once. However, she diminished his actions.

I became so afraid for my friend’s safety, that I explained to her that she should definitely break up with him. However, her enamourment with this person was so great that she proceeded to explain how they’ve been through so much together and how this person was with her during the funeral of her family member. After much warnings and conversations, she decided to delete all social media. Till this day I haven’t spoken to her.

You can only help people so much. Unfortunately, it’ll take for some to understand when enough is enough. You can’t make this decision for others. Nevertheless, if there is someone asking for help, get informed on how to protect your friend and to always support his or her decision on leaving the perpetrator. Do not see this person as a burden. Be patient and understanding. If the person goes back to the abuse, the only thing you can do is to stay with open arms waiting for that person to come back. That way they’ll know you truly care and offer to wish help and not criticism. I would suggest for you to watch this video: 

And remember you…you are beautiful!

Loren Ruiz
PLQ Survivor and Ambassador


Weekly Motivation video With Kenyatta Mitchell – Impact of Abuse

At the point of impact when a baseball establishes contact with a bat, the ball becomes a part of the force exerted by the bat. The aftermath experienced during abuse still impacts the individual long after the initial contact! (Direct Link to the video,, Scroll if you want to read video at the bottom).

Whenever we have been impacted by a violent past, it is important to realize that just because the encounter happened in the past it still has the ability to be present during the aftermath. The best way to create separation from a troubled past is to redirect your energy and time into rebuilding yourself and reconstructing an encouraging environment.

The act of rebuilding starts with understanding that you are not at fault for the cruelty that you may have been exposed to in the past. That your life is worthy and valuable, and that how you were treated was and is unacceptable. Today is the day, that we seek to capture the essence of victory and invite it into your life. With the walk of confidence, the skip of hope, and the stride of possibilities that your past will no longer impact your future.

Today is that day that you acknowledge that your past was not ideal, but you are willing to take a leap of possibility and turn a past victim into a future victor. Step by step, day by day, I am claiming power over my past and reclaiming my future on my terms!




Kenyatta Mitchell
Project Life Quality Motivational Speaker

Dare to Create – Recovery isn’t a linear experience


ebf57993-7435-4c32-8a5f-a6e61cc3fd88.jpeg– pixabay.com

Hello survivors, and welcome to another Dare to Create article from #ProjectLifeQuality. Your creative corner, where we discuss our topic of the week and you are provided with a suggestion to take away with you.

This will be something designed to encourage, and motivate you to explore your thoughts through the use of the arts. PLQ continues to explore the topic of emotional abuse this week. Today’s article focuses on the impact and aftermath of abuse, and we look at how we can help ourselves recover. You’ll find more about this below the challenge.

Dare to Create – the challenge

This week I would like us to gently explore our personal abuse timelines.

Challenges like PTSD have a tendency to raise their ugly head unexpectedly, so just remember to look after yourself, take as long as you need to do this challenge and do only what you feel ready for. I hope you find great healing through this.

18626D0B-1153-47C9-8C03-E55891698A17Image source top and bottom left – typorama.com

The challenge – Paint a timeline of your emotions

* Consider your emotional journey of abuse
–  Before the abuse
–  During abuse
–  The present time

Now Consider the phrase

“Recovery isn’t a linear experience.”

It is neither a straight line nor the same as the next survivors,

so what does your timeline look like?

Think of methods and unusual tools with which to your draw lines.
(Cotton buds, your fingertips, fingerprints, your feet, a chopstick or cocktail stick, a garden twig… The list of options is limitless! Can you use something specific to your story? Whatever it is, remember self-love first and foremost.)

Use words in your artwork                                                                                                                                                                            – these could be significant dates,

– feelings or a specific memory,

– a poem you’ve written about abuse.

This is about YOU and YOUR journey, so what does yours look like?

Please share with us. Don’t forget to tag @projectlifequality #plq.


B57AC9E0-A89E-4773-8246-154C6C7BB2F8.jpegSource of background – Typorama.com

The impact and aftermaths of emotional abuse

“We can’t heal within the same environment that made us sick.” It sounds pretty simple when put like that, doesn’t it? But when in the abusive environment, it’s easy for us to not see it – or not wish to see it. I certainly identify with both, and perhaps you do too.

For me to grow and heal I needed to remove myself from the person. An analogy I think of when I revisit this experience, is gardening. Plants give me a lot of pleasure and orchids are one of my favorites. But orchids are fussy eaters and if I feed them with… Let’s say, tomato ketchup, I am certain they would rebel! They won’t even tolerate tap water! For them to look their best and flower their little hearts out, they must be happy and cared for – just like us. For me, that meant no contact followed by finding my true identity and confidence again.

The damaging effects of emotional and verbal abuse

Staying in an emotionally or verbally abusive relationship can have long-lasting effects on your physical and mental health.


So how do we move forward?

The benefit of healing affirmations for victims of abuse

The attack on a person’s character, appearance, interests, job, friends/family… and everything else of importance to them, can emotionally break a person down so that they no longer trust their own judgment or perspective. The consequence if this is that they can find themselves trapped by the lack of confidence. After all, if told frequently that “No one else would put up with, what I do.” or “You can’t even cook, so how on earth would you survive without me?” it will eventually make a person so confused that they may start to believe the lies they hear.

How do we combat those voices that still live in our head?

Last week’s article explored emotional abuse looks and feels like, plus a little about how science has proven the arts can heal trauma. (If you missed it, click the link at the bottom.) And this is a fundamental reason behind Dare to Create challenges. Healing affirmations is another tool we can use to assist our healing.

Considering this week’s creative challenge, I’d like you to read the following. It’s from an article called 7 Healing Affirmations For Victims of Narcissistic Abuse. Link to their page

2DE62860-8187-467E-A6BC-5FE42CF117D8– 7 Healing Affirmations For Victims of Narcissistic Abuse – http://www.aconsciousrethink.com

It is important to remind yourself that the healing process is a continual one. Depending on how long a narcissist was a part of your life, it can take months years, or even a lifetime to fully come to terms with it.

What’s more, the path is not always a straightforward one; you may take forward steps, backward steps, and even sideways steps. Just remember that every step is a part of the journey and that it is neither a waste or a failure to have setbacks.

This simple confirmation that you are healing can provide the energy and impetus to get you through the challenges you’ll face along the way.”

~ A Conscious Rethink

If you found this useful, try saying the affirmation out loud daily. Visit the website for six more.

Further reading

Dare To Create – The benefits of Recovery Through Arts

Be the person you want to be!


Rebecca Goldthorpe
PLQ Creative Coach and Journalist

Non Profit Organisation for Abuse Survivors

%d bloggers like this: