If you are in immediate danger call 911
Otherwise, our 24-hour Crisis Line is
425-258-7081 TTY for the Deaf community
You are Not Alone
If you or someone you love is experiencing sexual or domestic violence, you are not alone. YWCA staff are available 24-hours a day to speak with you and help to assess your situation, build a safety plan, find you immediate safety, connect you with hospital accompaniment or to refer you to our counseling program.
We serve anyone suffering from the trauma of sexual abuse, rape and/or domestic violence based on their needs and current situation. This includes women, children, teens and men who have experienced violence recently or in the past.
Contact us for more information.
- Do not use this website if you suspect your computer is being monitored by your abuser. For your safety, learn about technology and safety before you use our website.
- Please note the “Quick Escape” button on each page, it will take you to the MSN website, should you need to exit our site quickly. Use this if someone you do not trust enters the room and may see what website you are visiting.
- Don’t leave YWCA or related information or materials in a place where someone might find them.
- If you call us and have a redial feature on your phone, be sure to dial a "safe" number after you call us.
Remember, internet communication and access is traceable. Your abuser may be able to see what websites you have visited and emails you have sent even if you delete your browser history and delete files. Access a safe computer to use the Internet such as at a library, community center or a friend’s house.
Technology & Safety
Technologies, such as cell phones, GPS systems, and the Internet are all tools that have become part of our daily lives. These tools of productivity can also make you vulnerable to an abuser.
It used to be that someone had to be very technically adept in order to tweak technology to use it for anything other than its intended purpose. However, our dependence upon these devices and the accessibility of information makes that dependence dangerous. When you use technology, you also potentially open a window through which your abusers can track your movements. By paying attention to some key rules, you can limit what your abuser knows.
- Remember that “corded” phones are more private than cordless phones or analog cell phones. Anyone can use a baby monitor or scanner to eavesdrop on phone calls from a cordless phone.
- After calling a domestic violence crisis line or other safety resources, always call an unrelated safe number afterward. If your abuser hits re-dial, it will dial that number.
- Be aware you may not be able to reach 911 using an Internet phone or Internet-based phone service. You may need to be prepared to use another phone to call 911. You should consider a secret cell phone hidden in an easily accessible location to call 911 if needed.
- Use a donated or new cell phone. When making or receiving private calls or arranging escape plans, try not to use a shared or family cell phone because cell phone billing records and phone logs may reveal your plans to an abuser.
- Contact your local domestic violence program, shelter, or rape crisis center to learn about free 911 cell phone donation programs.
- Check your cell phone settings. If you are using a cell phone provided by the abusive person, consider turning it off when you are not using it. Also, many phones let you to “lock” the keys so a phone won’t automatically answer or call if it is bumped. When on, check the phone settings. If your phone has an optional location service, you may want to switch the location feature off/on via phone settings or by turning your phone on and off.
Internet and Computer Safety
- If you think your online activities are being monitored, they probably are. Abusive people are often controlling and want to know your every move.
- You don’t need to be a computer programmer or have special skills to monitor someone’s computer and Internet activities – anyone can do it.
- You can delete your internet history from your computer. If you are being monitored, it may be dangerous to change your computer behaviors such as suddenly deleting your entire internet history if that is not your regular habit.
- It is not possible to delete or clear all the “footprints" of your computer or online activities. If you think you may be monitored on your home computer, be careful how you use your computer since an abuser might become suspicious. You may want to keep using the monitored computer for everyday activities, like looking up the weather. Use a safer computer to research an escape plan, look for new jobs, apartments, bus tickets or to ask for help.
- It might be safer to use a computer in a public library or at a trusted friend’s house.
- Email and Instant/Text Messaging (IM) are not safe or confidential ways to talk to someone about the danger or abuse in your life. If possible, please call the Crisis Line instead.
- Create a new email account. If you suspect that anyone can access your email, consider creating an additional email account on a safer computer. Do not create or check this new email from a computer your abuser can access, in case it is monitored. Use an anonymous name, and account: (example: email@example.com, not YourRealName@yahoo.com) Look for free web based email accounts such as gmail, yahoo mail or hotmail, and do not provide detailed information about yourself.
GPS and other
An abuser can turn on a GPS system on your car or cell phone in many cases and monitor your movements.
Trust your instincts.
If you suspect your abuser knows too much, it is possible that your phone, computer, email, or other activities are being monitored.