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How to Help a Friend

What do I do?

If the sexual assault occurred recently (within five days):

  1. Make sure your friend is safe. Call Public Safety if there are immediate safety concerns at 310.506.4441
  2. Encourage your friend to get needed medical attention as soon as possible. The Santa Monica Rape Crisis Center is the best option near the Malibu campus, call 310.319.4000
  3. Offer to stay with your friend and/or call others they want to be present in this initial stage. Perhaps they would like to speak to an RA or RD? Or a family member?
  4. Encourage your friend to use options available, but do not force decisions on your friend. Choice has already been taken away. Let your friend have control now. Help your friend consider these options:
    1. Call Santa Monica Rape Treatment Center - 310.319.4000, open 24 hours per day, 7 days per week
    2. Call a Pepperdine University counselor - During the day, call 310.506.4210 or after hours, call Public Safety at 310.506.4441, indicating this is a crisis and you would like a counselor paged. Most of the time, a counselor is available on campus.
    3. Call Public Safety if your friend is ready to make a report - 310.506.4441 

Ways to be supportive of a friend who has been assaulted:

  • LISTEN to your friend. Victims, at times, need to talk about What happened.
  • DON'T PUSH your friend...allow your friend the freedom to decide when, where and how to talk about the trauma.
  • BELIEVE your friend. Reinforce that victims are never to blame. Avoid using words that imply blame.
  • BE PATIENT, your friend will need your friendship for a long time.
  • CALL the counseling center for an appointment for yourself if you need additional ideas or just need support as you try to be there for your friend.