Therapy can be a significant help in working through sexual assault. But it's not the only thing that a sexual assault survivor can do. For an individual who has been sexually assaulted, there is a need to accept that the perpetrator is responsible for the assault, not the one who was assaulted. In fact, this is probably one of the most difficult challenges. Reading and educating yourself on sexual assault is a help, and www.rainn.org can provide a lot of materials and articles on topics such as placing blame where it belongs and getting help.
Writing your story or writing about sexual assault in general that shares some experiences of your own and how to deal with it can help both yourself as a survivor, and can reach out and help other survivors who survived sexual assault. This reduces isolation and gives other survivors permission to speak up as well, which takes back the power of the survivors who share their experiences.
Many universities or sexual assault agencies will have conferences or events that survivors can get involved with. This may be learning more about sexual assault, about getting involved, as well as even the opportunities to share your story with others who have experienced sexual assault.
There are many other ways to help get through sexual assault, but these are just a few that come to mind. In my experience, standing up and giving back to others feel seems to give something decent from such a bad situation, that I can help another who has gone through this tragedy as well.
Whatever you do, don't give up, and don't blame yourself. Hold on to hope in your ability to recover and move past this. You won't forget, but the pain can dissipate with time and processing.
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January 24th, 2015 4:22am
Listen to them. Do not assume you understand what they need even if you have talked to other victims or been one yourself. Ask them what they need. Reassure them it's not their fault. Help them feel safe by allowing them to feel what they're feeling. Offer resources IF it seems appropriate but if not, let it go. Above all, do not judge. Just be yourself. Be present. Be there.