An Injunction - Now What?

Are you thinking that injunction isn’t worth the paper it’s written on? Do you wonder how you can make the most of the fact you have an injunction against your abuser? You will notice when this Order was entered on my behalf, it was an Order for a temporary ex parte “injunction.” Today they are also known as restraining orders, but I was issued my Order in the 80s. Even back then, the Judge was so appalled at the things said in his courtroom, he tossed my file in my direction and said, “Young lady, you have 90 days to get a divorce. Do you understand?” I meekly shook my head in compliance.

Here are some suggestions to possibly help put more teeth into your Order:

* ALWAYS carry a copy of the Order and a photograph of the perpetrator with you. Have it in your purse, and perhaps an extra set in the glove box of your car. Keep a set somewhere safe within your home, as well.

* Provide copies of the Order and a photograph of your abuser to your minister or spiritual leader at whatever house of worship you attend.

* If you work outside the home, meet with and speak to your office administrator or human resources director about your situation. See that they have a copy of the Order and a photograph of the batterer. You may need to explain just a bit. Let them know there is potential danger, and if he is seen coming through any entrance, 911 should be called immediately. We DREAM of the day ALL of corporate America wakes up and becomes pro-active against the repetitive massive killings at workplaces that are directly related to domestic disputes. Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence is doing just that.

* In the event you have not yet done so, it’s time to talk with your family. Let them know what has transpired. Be sure a family member has a copy of the Order and a copy of a photograph, as well. They may need to present them to law enforcement, and it is always helpful to our first responders to know what the person they are up against looks like.

* Develop a safety code word or phrase with your closest friend. You know the friend. You spend most of your down time with this person. If they hear you mention the word in a conversation, that is code for, “He’s here,” or “He’s on his way,” but especially, “I’m in danger! HELP!” Your friend should call 911, inform the dispatcher there is an emergency, and a report has been made that a Restraining Order or No-Contact Order either has been or is about to be broken, putting the victim in harm’s way. Let them know if children are involved and potentially in danger, as well.

And foremost, if at all possible, be sure whoever makes the call knows to inform law enforcement if the abuser is under the influence of drugs or alcohol (or known to abuse them), and if they carry or own weapons. We want to keep our law officers safe, too.

Carolyn is an advocate for sexual/domestic violence and assault awareness, also focusing on child sexual abuse. She is a Life Direction & Empowerment Coach, working with victims and survivors of molestation, sexual assault, domestic violence or spousal abuse, and bringing training to organizations seeking to help victims. Hennecy spent much time during October 2011, which is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, with media doing radio and television interviews. See Carolyn’s interview with Gayle Guyardo of NBC Channel 8 News Today Early Morning Show and her featured segment on the ABC Action News Emmy Award winning “Taking Action Against Domestic Violence” at

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