For Teens

Questions You May Have

How will my parents react?
No one can predict exactly how your parents will react. It may help for you to think about how they have responded to other problems you have shared with them in the past.

It's very common for teenagers who have been sexually assaulted to be unsure about whether or not they want to tell their parents about the assault. You may want to spare your parents emotional pain. You may feel ashamed and embarrassed. You may be afraid that you will be punished or "grounded" by your parents. Some teenagers are raped in situations in which they were doing something that their parents had forbidden, such as drinking, going to a party without parental permission, or hanging out somewhere against their parents' wishes. Some may have been physically abused by their parents in the past and are afraid of being hurt again. Some are worried about being blamed by their parents for the sexual assault.

If you have any of these fears and concerns, you can talk them over with a rape counselor or an advocate. If you decide to tell your parents what happened to you and ask for their support, a counselor can help you through the process. A counselor can offer suggestions about how to talk to your parents or, with your consent, can speak to them on your behalf. A counselor may also be able to stay with you when you talk with your parents. In addition, a counselor can assess your safety and make a plan to help ensure that you will be safe after your parents are told about the sexual assault.






For Teens