It is important that you communicate support and acceptance to someone who has disclosed a sexual assault to you. Allow the survivor to speak openly and freely. Let them decide what they want to tell you about the assault – don’t force them to talk about it if they aren’t ready. Here are some suggested responses that convey your support:
"I’m sorry this happened to you."
"You didn’t deserve for this to happen."
"This wasn’t your fault."
"I believe you."
"How can I help you?"
Know it was not her/his fault: Most victims of sexual assault feel as though they are some how to blame for their own assault. Especially, in acquaintance rape/date rape situations victims often feel as though they should have done something different or seen it coming. While this is a normal response, it’s important that as a support person you help the victim know that they are not to blame. No one wants or asks to be sexually assaulted.
Click here for links to many other local, state, and national organizations working to end domestic violence and sexual assault .
Click the links below for more information about domestic violence.
Don’t hesitate to call us (888-721-4340) if anything you read raises a red flag about your own relationship or that of someone you know. We’re here to help.