WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE IS ASSAULTED, IT AFFECTS YOU TOO.
Please know, you are not alone. Our team is here to support you as a secondary survivor, in addition to supporting the person you love - no matter when their rape/assault occurred. Just as we offer comprehensive free services - in both English and Spanish - that can assist your loved one as they move forward, we are also here for you. You'll find more info on our services under the What We Do header.
Most people don't know the right thing to say or do when it comes to supporting a loved one who has been assaulted. One of the most important things you can do is offer nonjudgmental, non-blaming support and be patient with the survivor as he or she finds their own way toward healing.. This can be done by saying things like:
I believe you. It's not you're fault. You're not alone - I'm here for you. I'm listening.
Please know that trauma can affect everyone differently and we have no control over how our brain will react to sexual trauma. Sexual assault is a crime of power and control - anything you can do to help your loved one regain some sense of power or control in the wake of the assault can be a very supportive step. Present choices, don't assume you know what is best for the survivor - allow them to drive their own healing.
Another very supportive step is for you to get help and support for your feelings, so you are not adding more stress to the survivor.
We are here to help you get through this too!