How to attend to a man who has disclosed his abuse to you?

FOR THE PARENT, PARTNER AND FRIEND

In order to lighten the burden of those loved ones close to you that have experienced an act of sexual abuse, it is important that during their disclosure to you, you should attend to them in a very calm and caring manner.

When a man is sexually abused, or is telling you of his abuse, you may notice changes in their emotions and behaviors’.  Please note that their hostility and anger, if any, are not at all directed towards you as their parent, partner or friend, even if verbalised at you. These are often normal, human responses to events or traumas that cause considerable pain and anguish. This is a time for your loved one to sort through their emotions, and it is up to you to provide the space and safety for this to unfold effectively.

Do not change or react any differently to a disclosure from your loved one. Give your love, compassion, empathy and care toward them at all times, always monitoring your feelings and possible negative responses you may have and put them aside for a later stage. Now is not the time to blame or argue or shout. Your son or partner or friend is very vulnerable right now and needs you to provide stability in their life.

Be humble and selfless toward him and you will be doing something so extremely beneficial and valuable to their recovery. Do this out of love and you will notice positive change in the ones you love, be patient.

 

Nelson Mandela

"As I walked out the door towards my freedom, I knew that if I did not leave all the anger, hatred and bitterness behind, I would still be in prison"

IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT

People from all walks of life can be a victim of sexual abuse. It doesn’t matter your age, race or cultural background, everyone is at risk of becoming a victim. It must be known that you did not choose for this to happen to you, there is nothing specific about you that makes you more vulnerable to this abuse. Sexual abuse, like any form of abuse is a criminal offence and is never the fault of the person it happens to. It doesn’t matter whether you were drinking or drugging. It doesn’t matter what you were wearing or saying. It doesn’t matter if you knew the abuser or were having an argument. You are, Under No Circumstances responsible for being assaulted or sexually abused. The person who did this to you is the only person responsible for your sexual assault; they are the ones to blame.