It’s tough seeing those you love get hurt. It’s hard to deal with emotionally when you can’t make everything better for them but this is the harsh reality we live in. Every day, hundreds of people are sexually assaulted, and the statistics are heartbreaking. Anyone in your life could have these experiences, and it is up to them to confide in you about them. But what can you do when they do?
Whelp, not what you want! You can be furious. You might want to scream or hurt the person who committed the act and go to the police – but you can’t. Because this isn’t about what you want, this is about what will make them comfortable. Sexual assault is a trying event to come to terms with, and it can be even harder telling someone about it. Making a decision to trust you with this hurtful information was difficult; it needs to be treated with respect.
Now, here’s what you can do!
- Listen. It seems simple enough but this is one of the most challenging things to do in our everyday lives. Just listen to whatever they are comfortable saying. It’s okay to ask questions but understand you might not get an answer. While you are processing this new information, they too are processing this experience and may be for quite some time. This is something that will impact their life to varying degrees and patience is key.
- Support. Make sure they know that you are there for them whenever and as long as they desire you to be. Also, understand you can’t help with everything and that professional resources are available.
- Make sure they are properly taking care of themselves. Don’t start hovering at every crevice of their life now! It doesn’t hurt to make sure they are eating well and maybe getting some sunlight. Try checking in periodically to see that they are staying healthy physically while they mentally recover.
Now you have some tools to be the best patient, non-judgmental confidante that you can be.
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About Our Author
Elexia Salinas is a recent Marketing graduate who is always looking for new exciting stories! She enjoys reading, going on walks with her cats, and attempting to survive the cold climate she has found herself in. Always looking to expand her skills and hobbies, Elexia has recently taken up embroidery, an almost excruciatingly long endeavor but one that produces rewarding fruits of labor. Helping and encouraging other woman through inspiring stories is a big part of what she loves to do.