RCASA Therapy Thursday: How to Help a Friend

In Sexual Assault Awareness on July 14, 2011 at 9:14 am

Many people are unsure of what to do when they learn that a friend or family member is a survivor of  recent sexual violence.  There are many questions and feelings that might arise.  The most important things to remember are:

1.  Listen

2.  Believe them

3.  Do not pass your own personal judgements or values onto them

4.  Remind them that you are there to support them

5.  Help them go over options of how to proceed

6.  Encouarge them to talk to an advocate and then a therapist

The sooner an individual receives help and support after trauma, the more quickly the healing process can begin for them.  It is helpful to encourage survivors to call their local sexual assault crisis hotline as the victim advocates have been trained in specifics related to sexual assault cases.

It is also important to remember that secondary survivors can experience vicarious trauma as well so it is essential to remember to invest in your own self-care as well.


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