Helping a Loved One

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*Adapted from the website of the Rape and Incest National Network 

There are many ways that you can help a friend or family member who has been a victim of rape or sexual violence:

  • Listen. Be there. Don’t be judgmental.

  • Be patient. Remember, it will take your loved one some time to deal with the crime.

  • Help to empower your loved one. Rape and sexual violence are crimes that take away an individual’s power, it is important not to compound this experience by putting pressure on your loved one to do things that he or she is not ready to do yet.

  • If you are dealing with an issue involving your child, create a safe place by talking directly to them.

  • If your loved one is considering suicide, follow-up with them on a regular basis.

  • Let your loved one know that professional help is available through the Sexual Assault Support and Help for Americans Abused Abroad (SASHAA) Crisis Line. 

  • Encourage him or her to contact a sexual assault hotline, but realize that only your loved one can make the decision to get help.