Guidance for Referrers
Has your patient/ client been raped?
You may have patients/clients who admit immediately that they have been raped or sexually assaulted. Although they will be suffering from the trauma of the attack, these women are willing to initiate a conversation about it.
Our experience shows that you may also have more patients/clients who have been raped but can’t admit it straightaway. Many of our clients say that they were desperate for help, but that no one asked them the question. They displayed all the signs that something was wrong, but no one picked up on them.
If you have patients/clients who are showing signs of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, self injuring or abusing alcohol or drugs - ask the question. Have they been raped or sexually assaulted?
When a woman is raped or sexually assaulted she is completely disempowered by the perpetrator. The woman will have feared for her very survival as her attacker coerced her. This powerlessness and sense of a lack of choice is felt on an emotional, cognitive and physiological level.
Sometimes the desire of family members or professionals to organize support for the woman quickly can reinforce this feeling of helplessness and inadvertently become an additional pressure.
We recommend asking the woman who has suffered the assault to refer herself to us. We can ensure that it is she herself who is making the choice about accessing our services. On a psychological level, she is learning that she can make choices for herself, that she has power over their own life and can make decisions which are right for her. And this is very valuable for the healing process.
If you want advice on referring someone to Rape Crisis London, contact us.