Womens Health

Domestic Violence

You deserve to be safe in your relationships

If you are experiencing violence within the home, help is available. WINGS @ NCH offers crisis intervention services around the clock in our Emergency Room for domestic violence, child abuse/neglect and sexual assault. We also offer domestic violence services, including counseling and referrals. For assistance with domestic violence services, contact us at 847-618-3208.

If you are in an unsafe situation and need immediate help, please call 911.

To make a confidential appointment with a professional counselor, please call our WINGS @ NCH counselor at 847-618-3208. Calls will be returned in 48 hours and counseling is free.

Domestic violence is when physical, emotional, economic, spiritual and/or sexual abuse is used to control another person. Both adults and adolescents from all types of social, ethnic and economic groups commit acts of domestic violence.

If you are a victim of domestic violence, please realize:

  • You are not crazy
  • You are not to blame
  • What has happened to you is a crime
  • No one has to live with violence
  • You deserve to be safe
  • You don't have to go through this alone
  • There are experts to talk to and safe places to stay in our community
  • Make a call! Get the help and support you and your children deserve

There is usually a repeating pattern in domestic violence

In many abusive relationships, violence is not a one-time incident. The abuse usually happens again and again. While every relationship is different, many abusive relationships follow a repeating pattern called the Cycle of Abuse. The Cycle of Abuse has three phases: tension building, explosion and the calm or honeymoon phase. Each phase might be as short as few seconds, and as long as several years.

Over time, the honeymoon phase may get shorter as the explosions become more violent and dangerous. Relationships often start in the honeymoon phase. This can make it especially confusing and scary when the explosion phase happens for the first time.

  • Tension Building
    Anger, blaming, arguing: victim tries to please/reason
  • Explosion
    Physical, emotional and/or sexual abuse or threat of violence: victim tries to protect self from harm, reason with abuser, leave or fight back
  • Calm/Honeymoon stage
    Abuser apologizes, begs forgiveness, makes promises; victim believes, has hope, is relieved and agrees to stay

If your partner has ever been violent, it is likely to happen again. Without help, the violence usually gets worse. The end result can be serious injury or death.

WINGS @ NCH – a program to support victims of Domestic Violence

If you are being abused, here are a few organizations that can help you.

Referrals and counseling

24-hour hotline
Emergency shelter
Transitional housing
Counseling and support groups
Children's counseling

Life Span
24-hour hotline
Counseling and support groups
Legal help
Children's counseling

Chicagoland Domestic Violence Help Line
1-877-863-6339 (TTY)

National Domestic Violence Hotline
800-799-SAFE (7233)
800-787-3224 (TDD)

How to tell if you or someone you know is abused

When an intimate partner:

  • Is frequently jealous or accuses you falsely.
  • Continually criticizes, calls you names or insults you.
  • Keeps you from getting or keeping a job.
  • Isolates you from your friends and family.
  • Controls your money.
  • Threatens to hurt you.
  • Threatens to leave or take your children.
  • Keeps you from driving, leaving your home or seeing friends and family.
  • Pushes, shoves, slaps, kicks, chokes or punches you.
  • Holds you to keep you from leaving.
  • Refuses to help you when you're sick or injured.
  • Has locked you out of the house or abandoned you in dangerous places.
  • Throws objects at you.
  • Forced sex or insisted on unwanted or uncomfortable touching.
  • Makes you wear provocative clothing that you don't feel comfortable wearing.

Safeguard Tips

At home:

  • Think about what you will say to your partner if he/she becomes violent.
  • Identify a list of people to contact and a safe place to go if your home is not safe. The agencies listed on this page can help you.
  • If you think an abusive partner is following you, go to a police department or public place for safety.
  • If you have an order of protection, carry it with you at all times.
  • Keep change or a cell phone with you at all times.
  • Memorize important phone numbers to call in case of an emergency.
  • Establish a "code word or sign" so family, friends, teachers or co-workers know when to call for help.
  • In a safe place (such as your car or a family member's home), keep a bag packed with important papers including copies of your driver's license, divorce decree, mortgage papers, birth certificates and social security cards, school and vaccination records for your children and medications.

At work:
Talk to your employer about:

  • Your right to time off to deal with domestic violence problems (The Illinois Victims' Economic Security and Safety Act).
  • The possibility of an alternate schedule and/or parking space.
  • Confidentiality about your schedule to outside callers and visitors.