Dear Bearby: Worried Friend

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Dear Bearby,

My friend told me she was sexually assaulted and that I shouldn’t tell anyone. It happened a long time ago (10+ years) but her parents don’t even know. She is so nice and I feel so bad for her. What should I do?

From, Worried Friend

Dear Worried Friend,

Your friend told you this story confidentially, meaning that you should honor the request, especially considering the time frame.

However, if the situation changes if you know that her assaulter may still be harassing her. The most important thing is that your friend feels safe. If you notice an issue, the most helpful thing to do is to report the assaulter to a trusted adult (teacher, parent, or administrator), and keep her name out of the story as much as possible.

Love,
Bearby

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