The psychological impact of sexual assault is real and traumatic. During the assault your loved one may have felt hopeless and possibly feared for her/his life. Recovery is a slow rebuilding process. You can help your loved one’s recovery by encouraging her/him to seek professional help. Believe and listen to your loved one. Expect for your loved one to experience several different emotions and be prepared for anger, denial and sadness to exist.
Sexual assault is traumatic for everyone involved. You, as the support system, may feel victimized by the assault and experience anger, disbelief, confusion. These are all normal reactions. You may blame yourself for not being able to protect your loved one. Please know that the only person that is responsible for the assault is the assailant. Even if your loved one chooses not to seek professional help, you can enter counseling yourself. Help is available.