Resources for Sexual Assault Survivors
If you or someone you know has been affected by sexual violence, it's not your fault. You are not alone. Help is available 24/7 through the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE or visit RAINN.org.
According to RAINN, America's largest anti-sexual violence organization, another person experiences sexual assault every 98 seconds. Sexual violence affects hundreds of thousands of Americans each year, and while we're making progress—the number of assaults has fallen by more than half since 1993—even today, only 5 out of every 1,000 rapists will end up in prison. During Week 3 of "The Bachelorette" 2021, Bachelorette Katie Thurston opened up about a non-consensual experience in her past and how it's affected her life, and ABC and "The Bachelorette" are working with RAINN to spread the word on how to find help if you or someone you care about has experienced sexual assault.
Former Bachelor Nick Viall and Bachelorette Katie Thurston at the roundtable where Katie courageously shared her past with the group
There are many types of sexual violence, including rape, child sexual abuse, and intimate partner sexual violence—and other crimes and forms of violence may arise jointly in these instances. Sexual violence can have psychological, emotional, and physical effects on a survivor. These effects aren't always easy to deal with, but with the right help and support they can be managed. Below you'll find resources to cover everything from safety and prevention to how to speak with someone who has survived sexual assault.
Safety and Prevention: You can take an active role in increasing your safety or the safety of those you care about. While there's no way to eliminate the chance that something may happen, there are strategies that may reduce your risk or give you the confidence to step in to prevent a sexual assault.
After Sexual Assault: After sexual assault, it's hard to know how to react. You may be physically hurt, emotionally drained, or unsure what to do next. You may be considering working with the criminal justice system, but are unsure of where to start. Learning more about what steps you can take following sexual violence can help ground you in a difficult time.
Help Someone You Care About: It's not always easy to know what to say when someone tells you they've been sexually assaulted, especially when that person is a family member, friend, or loved one. But you can definitely help—and don't forget to take care of yourself, too.
Tips for Talking with Survivors of Sexual Assault: It's not always easy to know what to say when someone tells you they've been sexually assaulted, especially if they are a friend or family member. For a survivor, disclosing to someone they care about can be very difficult, so we encourage you to be as supportive and non-judgmental as possible.
For more resources, visit RAINN.org.