10 Things You Should (and Should Not) Say To A Victim Of Sexual Abuse

Sunday I preached a message called "Secrets Women Keep" that dealt with sexual abuse, and my wife shared her amazing story of being abused for 5 years before God rescued and saved her.  You can watch the message HERE.

Here are the things you do and don't say when someone you love comes to you and shares that they have been the victim of abuse.

10 Things You Should NOT Say

1.  Why didn't you tell me sooner?

2.  Why are you so upset?  That happened years ago.

3.  Stop crying and just put it behind you. 

4.  Why didn't you do something about it when it was happening?

5.  What do you expect me to do about it?  It's not my fault they did this to you.

6.  I'm going to find them and I'm going to make them pay for what they did to you.

7.  Don't tell anyone else about this.  It's embarassing.  We can handle it ourselves.

8.  Did you bring this on yourself somehow?  Did you secretly enjoy it?

9.  You don't need counseling or therapy.  Plus, that can be expensive and we can't afford it.

10.  It's time to move on.  You need to get over it.


10 Things You Should ALWAYS Say

1.  I love you, no matter what you tell me or what happened to you.

2.  I can't imagine how hard it was for you to tell me.  I am with you, no matther what happens now, until the very end.

3.  You're so brave and courageous, and I am so proud of you for sharing this with me.

4.  We are going to get through this together.  I am standing by your side and you can count on me.

5.  You're more beautiful to me now than you've ever been and I love you unconditionally.

6. The grace of God and the love of Jesus will sustain us.

7. Please be honest with me, and be patient, too.  I won't understand how you feel at first, but I will try and I will listen.

8.  I will go to counseling with you when you are ready.  And I am not in a hurry to fix this, so take your time.

9.  We will get you the help you need, no matter what it costs.

10.  It was not your fault.

Watch the entire message HERE.

What other things would you add to these lists?  Would you forward this blog to anyone you know who has been abused?