May is Sexual Violence Awareness Month in Alberta. Throughout the month, we’ll be sharing online resources and hosting Facebook Live sessions to raise awareness on the impacts of sexual assault and harassment, and sharing tips on how we can all play a role, both individually and collectively, in eradicating this issue from our communities.
This week’s theme is “How We Help – Supporting Survivors of Sexual Violence”.
Studies have shown that there is a link between the response that a survivor receives after disclosing that they have been sexually harassed and/or assaulted and their healing journey.
Everyone has the right to receive effective supports in the aftermath of sexual violence, and have choice in this journey. We’re here this week talking about how you can best support survivors.
Trigger Warning: This episode contains information about sexual violence that may be triggering to some
“Mental Health & Sex Therapist Erika Miley explores the different facets of sex and relationships from everyday experiences to what science experts say about sex. In this episode, Erika talks about sexual assault and research on rates of false accusations of sexual assault. The information may surprise you!”
If someone you know has been assaulted, the most important thing you can do to support them is to sit back and listen. It is also very important for you to be aware of your own feelings and stay attentive to your needs.
There’s no black and white answer for how to best support a survivor since everyone is different, but the As One Project offers a wonderful resource for people who find themselves supporting someone who has had a traumatic experience.
A Guide for Friends and Family of Sexual Violence Survivors
Friends and family members of survivors of sexual violence often want to help a survivor through her or his experience but don’t know how. This guide contains advice about how to provide support without unintentionally increasing the stress that survivors experience, and otherwise doing harm.