The victims of sexual assault find it very hard to re-fit in the society because of the trauma they have suffered. This is particularly true for teens as they are generally not as mentally strong as their adult counterparts. This is where the role of parents, relatives, and friends is so important. They all have to play their part in helping the victim get over the shock and move on, though that is easier said than done. However, a recovery is not impossible. In fact, there are quite a few ways to help teens recover from sexual assault, some of which have been outlined below.
Help The Victim Regain Confidence
After suffering from such ordeal, things obviously don’t look good for the victims. They are likely to be suffering from depression and may barely talk to anyone. This is where your role as parent, relative, or a friend comes in. You have to talk to them and encourage them to talk to other people. The conversations don’t necessarily have to relate with the incident, it can be about anything. The essential point here is to get them talking so that they can regain their confidence. However, don’t go in expecting things to be easy. You will face a lot of resistance at first, but you have to remain patient and persistent. Sooner or later, they will open up and vent their pent up emotions to relieve themselves of the burden and stand up on their feet again.
Take the Victim’s Mind Off the Horrifying Incident
Sexual assault victim keeps thinking back to the incident and it is your job to change that. You need to distract them with other activities. These can be anything – you can take them some place that they always wanted to visit, or watch their favorite movie together, or play their favorite sport with them, or you can get them into something new like cooking, fishing, exercising, etc. Anything that helps take their mind off the incident should be given a shot.
Respect Boundaries and Tread Carefully
Sometimes, in an effort to help the victim, people go too far. They discuss things that shouldn’t be discussed or say things that shouldn’t be said. Make sure that you don’t do either. Victims do need reassurances, but they also need time to heal. You cannot just go in all guns blazing and asking them about the details. You have to take it slow, be patient with them. Soon they will recover, and tell you about the incident themselves.
Bring in Professional Help
Doing your bit certainly helps, but in these types of scenarios, it is recommended that you seek professional help as well. Victims of sexual assault are in a sensitive state and need to be handled with care, and therapists are perfect for the job. They know what victims of sexual assault may be going through and can actually help ease their pain. The teen might not open up to you about the assault, but they are likely to talk about it with their therapist. So do yourself and the victim a favor and get professional help as soon as possible.