Maybe we can help you reach your friend, neighbor or co-worker in a non-threatening, professional and caring manner.
Tell them that you have just been to a meeting or read a book about people who get hit or hurt by their partners. You have been wondering if it happens to them.
Understand that people don't identify themselves as abused because they are often blamed for it, i.e., there is something wrong with me if I put up with it. It's my fault and I must be stupid.
Put the responsibility where it lies - on the shoulders of the abuser. There is NO reason for abusing another person.
Stress the fact that your friend is not alone and there IS help available. Give them information on the resources and services for them.
Let your friend know that you are there if they need to run for help.
Recognize and deal with all societal pressures and role expectations on people to keep the family together at all costs, i.e., "It's my duty to stay with my partner. The kids need both the parents, etc." Particularly important are the financial reasons for which a person stays with their partner.
Understand that many people are trapped into these abusive relationships by fear of being murdered or seriously hurt, or losing their children.
Tell them that if they should ever need help they can come to you. Leave the door open for them to talk to you.
Try to suspend your judgment of them. They are surviving their situation as best they know how. Only THEY can know how difficult that is.
Understand that most abused men/women go in and out of the abusive relationship several times before deciding to permanently leave.
Sensitive listening is of utmost importance - the usual experience of abused men/women is that no one listens or takes them seriously.
Recognize and point out that family violence is learned at home, and that it is not healthy for children to live in a violent home simply so that they can be with both parents.