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Helping a Friend

HOW YOU CAN HELP A FRIEND

Be aware of ways in which your biases about sexual assault and victims may affect your ability to support and assist the victim. If you cannot be objective, refer the person to another support person.

Reassure the victim that you believe her/him (it is not your place to decide if she/he is telling the truth) and tell the victim that you will be supportive and help consider options.

Familiarize yourself with the usual emotional and physical reactions to victimization and help normalize these reactions for the victim.

REACTIONS TO VICTIMIZATION:

EMOTIONAL

PHYSICAL

You can also assist your friend by assisting her/him locate resources and being there as a supportive friend.

Please be aware that you may reach a point at which you feel uncomfortable in continuing to support the victim. Your feelings are important and should be acknowledged. You are able to access both the Carruth Center for Psychological and Psychiatric Services and RDVIC to speak with someone also. Its important to take care of yourself also!

Seeking help?

If you are fearful for yourself or another person in your current environment or situation call 911 immediately.

Find an emergency contact

West Virginia University Campus Police: 304-293-3136.

WELLAWARE

An interactive bystander intervention training program that teaches students to realistically and effectively intervene in high-risk situations.

Learn more about WELLAWARE

File a complaint

File a complaint regarding discrimination, harassment, sexual & domestic misconduct (including sexual assault), stalking, or retaliation.

File now

Prevention Programs

Learn more about sexual assault and power-based personal violence prevention programs offered at West Virginia University.

View available programs.

WVU Peer Advocates

Get involved and make a difference

West Virginia University signed onto the national It’s On Us campaign in 2015 to continue violence prevention efforts and reinforce Mountaineers’ rights under Title IX.

Under the It’s On Us campaign, the University coordinates the WVU Peer Advocate program. Through this initiative, expertly trained students work to end sexual assault and power-based personal violence on campus through immediate crisis intervention and prevention awareness events.

Any student is welcome and encouraged to become a WVU Peer Advocate and can become involved by contacting a Title IX Education Specialist.

  • To RECOGNIZE that non-consensual sex is sexual assault.
  • To IDENTIFY situations in which sexual assault may occur.
  • To INTERVENE in situations where consent has not or cannot be given.
  • To CREATE an environment in which sexual assault is unacceptable and survivors are supported.
Take the Pledge