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Escape the abuse

Abuse and domestic violence
Put safety first and escape

Some sociopaths are capable of incredible violence, including murder. If you are involved with a sociopath who is physically abusive, leave as soon as possible.

Many victims of abuse find it difficult to break away. You may be doubting your perceptions. You may be embarrassed by what you have already endured. You may feel like you can’t survive on your own. Please understand that sociopaths are very good at twisting your mind and making you question your own good judgment. The sociopath is probably telling you that the abuse is your own fault. This is nothing but classic manipulation.

There is never a valid excuse for domestic violence.

For you, your children and your pets to get out safely, however, you may need to use caution. Do not confront the sociopath, do not provoke him and do not let him know that you plan to leave. In fact, you should make his coffee and turn on the charm—whatever it takes to keep him calm—until you’re ready to go. (This page refers to male abusers, but some female sociopaths are also capable of domestic violence.)

Plan your escape from domestic violence

Contact the police, and then set up a careful plan to outsmart him. Figure out where you can go—whether it’s to a domestic violence shelter or a friend or relative the abuser doesn’t know.

Put together an escape bag. Abuse survivors recommend you include the following:

  • Cash.
  • Spare house and car keys.
  • Important documents—birth certificates for you and your children, passport, driver’s license, health insurance card, mortgage, phone numbers and anything else you can think of. If you can’t take the originals, make copies.
  • Medications, copies of your prescriptions, multiple pairs of glasses.
  • Several changes of clothing.

The best time to leave is when the sociopath is not at home. Avoid confrontation if possible. But if the sociopath flies into a rage and you know it’s going to be bad, you may have to run with just the clothes on your back. Don’t hesitate. As long as you’re alive, you can sort out the rest later.

Vigilance and determination

Some sociopaths are not outwardly violent, but may arrange for you to have an “accident.” If you become suspicious, avoid situations where you’ll be alone with him and far from help—like camping or boating.

Once you leave, be cautious about telling people where you are. The sociopath may try to get information from the friends or relatives he knows, either by intimidation or by pretending to be worried about you.

Do not contact him. This is the only way to insure your safety and healing.

If you get a restraining order, keep in mind that in reality, it is nothing more than a piece of paper, and it may make him more enraged and dangerous. Always be vigilant.

More information

These are general tips—you know your situation best. The key is to understand that no matter how much he pleads and promises, sociopaths do not change. The best thing you can do for yourself, your children and your pets is to leave. It could save your lives.

For more tips, check out the Florida International University document, Safety Strategies for Domestic Violence Victims.

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