If you or someone you know is in danger or needs immediate help, then call 911.

If a friend or colleague has experienced sexual assault (including sexual violence, relationship violence, and stalking), there are ways you can help.

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Ask How You Can Help

  • Listen. Offer support and compassion. Be patient and try to avoid interrupting them or making statements that may be judgmental.
  • Don’t ask for details about what happened or why it happened. Let your friend share what they are comfortable sharing. Avoid questions that suggest blame.
  • Challenge statements of self-blame. Let your friend know the responsibility for the assault does not lie with your friend, regardless of what they did leading up to, during, or after what happened.
  • If your friend wants to seek medical attention or report the assault, offer to accompany that person to the hospital, police station, campus security, and so on.
  • Respect your friend's privacy. Do not tell others about your friend's assault or reveal any names or details without permission.

Remember to take care of yourself. Supporting a friend who has experienced sexual violence can be an emotional and challenging experience. Pay attention to your needs — this could mean setting boundaries, spending time on activities you enjoy, or talking to a friend or counselor if needed.