People who suffer from violent crimes usually experience serious trauma afterwards. The physical injury suffered by these victims may be as obvious as cuts, bruises and broken arms or legs. Since criminal injuries vary, the effects towards the victims are also different. But no matter what the criminal action is, the victim is always left with damages, loss and trauma.
How to Cope with Trauma or Loss
- Find someone to talk to and express how you feel. Don’t allow yourself to feel overwhelmed or panicked. Seek professional help when necessary.
- Spend time with people you love and who makes you feel good.
- Allow yourself to feel pain as it can be over soon.
- Take care of yourself – get enough rest, eat healthy and do some exercise.
- Try to come back to your normal routine, it may be difficult but it’s not impossible.
- Get control of your life, take it one step at a time.
- Do your daily tasks with care because accidents are more likely to happen when you are stressed.
- Do things that will keep your mind off of what happened, don’t let the incident dictate your life!
In the aftermath of every crime, a victim does not only struggle with the primary injuries but also the ‘secondary’ ones. Secondary injuries take place when you do not get the proper help that you need. These are usually caused by the people who surround you after the crime has happened – friends, family, professionals, law enforcers, judge, social service workers, etc. Try to avoid people who will not do you any good because they will just worsen your situation. Seek help from those who know how to help you cope. Failing to recognize your trauma or even just show sympathy will be damaging to your self-worth as a victim.
Interaction with the Justice System
It may be an agonizing experience to deal with the criminal justice system after being a victim of a violent crime. Because at this level, you will be asked to witness against the crime and it will be considered as a crime committed against the state. The procedure can be very difficult and may cause a lot of stress to you. You may also feel that you are not in control or directly involved in the prosecution of the offender.
But keep in mind that your cooperation is critical to seeking justice for the crime committed. Just make sure to find a lawyer who will keep you well-informed and updated about the proceedings. This will help you feel that you have a voice in the process and that you’re getting the justice that you deserve.