Counselling & therapies
Most Rape Crisis Centres offer counselling to victims and survivors of sexual violence. Some Centres also offer different types of therapy, like group work, body work or art therapy.
What is counselling?
Counselling is a type of talking therapy. It involves working with a trained specialist therapist.
Counselling provides a space that helps you get a clearer understanding of yourself, your experiences and your situation.
Your Rape Crisis counsellor will never force you to talk about anything you're not ready to. When you work with a counsellor who is right for you, you should feel understood and supported. You'll be encouraged to express your feelings in safe and appropriate ways.
You and your counsellor will review whether you feel the counselling is meeting your needs on a regular basis.
Deciding to have counselling can be a very powerful and life-affirming choice. At the same time, it's not always easy or comfortable. It will involve remembering and feeling memories and emotions that can be painful and difficult. This is a usual part of the counselling process and it will get easier.
Your local Rape Crisis Centre will have more information about the services it provides.
Some Rape Crisis Centres have lower age limits for their counselling service. For example, they might provide counselling to women and girls aged over 13 or 16 years old, and others work with children of any age, as well as adults.
Some Rape Crisis Centres also offer different types of therapy, like body work, group work, or play work.
Despite the differences between Rape Crisis Centres, you can be confident that all our members work to our Rape Crisis National Service Standards, meaning the services you receive will be specialist, confidential, free and independent.
Most Rape Crisis counselling is woman-centred and provided by women counsellors in a women-only safe space. Some Centres can also offer services to parents, partners or other supporters.
Half of our member Rape Crisis Centres provide counselling services to male survivors, and/or to male partners, parents etc., often within a separate space or on different days / at different times. They might also have male counsellors available.