- Do not blame the victim. Assure her that the assault was not her fault. Questions or comments such as, “How did you get yourself in that situation”, “Why were you there?” or “You should have known better,” only blame the victim when the responsibility should be placed on the offender.
- Listen. Often the best way to be of help to the victim is to be there for her as she grieves and sorts through what has happened.
- Offer support. Let the victim know that you are available to help them. She may feel better having you accompany her to the police station or cl
inic, or you may be able to help her cook a meal or take care of children while she obtains legal or medical counsel.
- Respect the victim’s decision. Be educated about the services available to victims of violence and refer victims to professionals. Keep in mind that the victim may not choose the option you might take if you were assaulted. Instead of trying to convince her to take a certain path, help her to know her options and respect her decisions while she tries to heal and recover. Everyone copes differently. Remember, the victim is in the best position to decide what option is best for her.