How Can We Support Our Friends Who Have Been Sexually Assaulted?
Did you know that 1 in 3 women worldwide have experienced physical or sexual violence?
This means that a third of our relationships are survivors and we may not even know it. Because of this, it is important to know how to be a listening presence, a source of encouragement, and an advocate for the people we love.
How can we support our friends who have been sexually assaulted?
1. Listen without judgment.
2. Be present.
3. Encourage the survivor to get support.
4. Be patient.
5. Encourage them to practice self-care.
6. Learn the warning signs of suicide and offer support.
7. Know of resources within your community.
8. “I acknowledge your pain. I’m here with you.”
9. “I believe you.”
Saying these simple words, “I believe you,” will let a survivor know that their story is valid—no matter what happened to them, they are not defined by it. At Freely in Hope, we work to break barriers of oppressive stereotypes that blame victims. Instead, we provide resources that fight for justice, educate communities, and let survivors know that they are heard.
If you know a survivor, use these 9 helpful tips to support them,
*Mumbi, Freely in Hope Scholar