Supporting Survivors


How can someone who has been groomed online break the cycle of seeking out abusive relationships, and what can friends or loved ones do to support them?


Online grooming is a serious issue that can have long-lasting effects on the mental health and well-being of people who experience it. It is not uncommon for those who have experienced grooming to find themselves in a pattern of seeking out similar abusive relationships. This behavior can be attributed to a variety of factors, including low self-esteem, a distorted perception of what constitutes a healthy relationship, and unresolved trauma.

To help someone break the cycle of seeking out abusive relationships, it is essential to approach the situation with empathy, understanding, and support. To start, make sure you continualy provide a safe space for your friend. Let them know that you are there to listen without judgment. Encourage open communication and validate their feelings. You might also gently point out any patterns you notice in their behavior or relationships that may be concerning. Help them understand what a healthy relationship looks like.

Your friend might also need assistance in creating healthy boundaries with the people they meet online. This may include setting limits on communication with abusive individuals and learning to say "no" when necessary. You can support them in this process by talking things through with them or by helping them engage in activities that promote self-care, such as hobbies, exercise, or spending time with positive influences outside of their online relationships. 

You might also encourage them to seek out professional help or assistance from a mental health professional who specializes in trauma and abuse. Therapy can help them work through their experiences, develop coping strategies, and build healthier relationships. 

Ultimately, I know it is hard, but try to be patient. Healing from trauma is a process, and it may take time for your friend to break the cycle of seeking out abusive relationships. Continue to offer support and understanding throughout their journey. Remember, while you can offer support and guidance, it is ultimately your friend's responsibility to take steps towards healing. If you feel overwhelmed or unequipped to handle the situation, don't hesitate to seek help from a qualified professional or direct your friend to appropriate resources, such as helplines or support groups for survivors of online grooming and abuse. Recognize your own boundaries and ensure you are promoting their autonomy while also protecting your own mental and emotional wellbeing. You are not alone. Thank you for reaching out to us.

Salida de seguridad