Speak Openly

*click to access national woman helpline

Speak about WHAT?

Sexual assault is a life-altering event. Many survivors are affected by the trauma for the rest of their lives. They may suffer from depression, low self-esteem, flashbacks, fear, and difficulty with intimacy. Unfortunately, many of these symptoms are compounded by silence and secrecy. Often, survivors of sexual assault do not speak out about their experiences because they are ashamed, feel guilty, or blame themselves. Some survivors keep silent out of a sense of duty to family or fear of being ostracized for what happened to them.

Why should you speak?

  • It helps you share your experience with people alike

  • Sharing your experience encourages people to share theirs

  • Talking about what happened is essential to let the society know that it happened to you and you were the victim of it.

  • It shows that the things that happened were wrong and uncalled for. It bashes the patriarchal norms of undermining women.

  • It will help you take the burden of guilt off, that  you have been carrying for so long. Opening up will make you feel better.

  • It will bring the criminal to justice and will prevent them from doing the same to others

Who else should talk other than the victim?

  • Victim's family, friends, collogues and anyone associated to the victim in any way must speak about it, to create an environment to openly support the victim and condemn the criminal. They should become active bystanders.

  • The family, friends, collogues and those associated with the criminals must openly condemn them.

  • Society should stand as an active By-stander with the victim

Where should one speak?

  • Openly in support groups

  • With their advocates, and in the courtrooms 

  • With media during interviews (which media should take sincerely and avoid victim blaming)

  • Within homes, educational institutions, workplaces etc. to promote a safe environment for women and a harsh threat for people thinking about such stuff

*This has been used as guiding document for this part of the campaign
Reference document Contains

1. Voices of the Victims
2. Guidelines on how to speak to media
3. Finding places to speak