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Friend been raped
 
Some of the most important things that you can do to help include:
 
DO:
 
• Let them talk as much as they want to AND LISTEN. Don't make them talk if they don't want to.
 
• Try to understand them.
 
• Let them make their own decisions. They have just experienced a situation where their control has been forcefully taken away from them. Once they start to make their own decisions, they may start to feel more in control of their life again. Even if you think their decisions are wrong, don’t force them to do what you want them to do or think that they should do. Rather encourage them to regain their sense of self and control.
 
• Let them know how you feel. You don't need to hide your feelings from them, it can help them to know that you care.
 
• What they tell you may shock, scare or hurt you. Let them know it’s okay to feel the way they do, even though it may hurt your feelings. Try not to be scared of your emotions, you will be able to concentrate on them more once you understand your own reactions. You can also go for counseling if you need it.
 
• Phone Rape Crisis or another help line if you are feeling worried or are not sure of what to do or if you just want to talk to someone, you may also need support.
 
DON'T:
 
• Don't judge them - this will not make them feel that they can trust you.
 
• Don't make them support you. Although it is good to let them know how you feel, it is important that you don't make them feel that they must help you to feel better, they need to concentrate on making themselves feel better.
 
• Don't tell them to ‘get over it’. Or that it's not so bad.
 
• Don't tell other people, unless they have given you permission.
 
• Don't blame them. Rape is never the survivor's fault.
 
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