How to Help

  • Believe the survivor
  • Let the survivor know that they did the right thing during the assault to ensure survival. Do not question or judge what they did to survive. Survival is evidence that they handled the situation correctly.
  • Reassure the survivor you love them and you know the assault wasn’t their fault.
  • See and accept the survivor’s hurt emotions.
  • Recognize the needs expressed by the survivor and their behavior.
  • Allow the survivor to be in control of decision making. This is important for big and small decisions.
  • Telling the survivor that you are there to listen and give support whenever they are ready to talk, but do not push for the survivor to talk.
  • Respect the survivor’s decision to report or not report the assault to law enforcement. There are tremendous personal sacrifices involved in prosecuting an offender and the survivor may not feel able to make those sacrifices.
  • Hope Harbor offers counseling for loved ones of survivors. More information can be received by calling our main office at (270) 782-5014 or (270) 846-1100.
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Support for You

Hope Harbor recognizes act of sexual violence are significant, life-changing events experienced by survivors, their families, partners, spouses, siblings, children, friends, etc. Individual and family therapy are often necessary to enhance and/or repair the damage that sexual trauma has inflicted on not only the survivor, but also those closest to them.

All of our services are available to non-offending spouses, partners, friends, and family members. Individual treatment for both the survivor and their support system is aimed at stabilizing the management of emotion and strengthening healthy coping skills. Whereas, family treatment focuses more on the prevention of disruption to the family during a time of crisis following disclosure of sexual abuse or assault.

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