10 ways to start healing

It takes time to work through the experience of image-based abuse. Be kind to yourself and try some of these simple ways to help yourself to feel better.

  1. Talk about your feelings

    Talk to supportive friends or family. You can read our suggestions on talking to friends and family here. Or contact a counsellor or support service. It can be hard to reach out, but talking to someone can really help.

  2. Accept your current feelings and emotions

    Accept that stressful situations can be extremely difficult, and be gentle on yourself. Remember things will get better.

  3. Treat yourself the way you would treat a friend

    What would you say to a friend if this happened to them? Use those words towards yourself.

  4. Keep doing what you normally do

    The quicker you get back to your normal routine, the easier things will be.

  5. Do something that makes you happy

    Listen to music, watch a good movie or show, talk with a friend, read a book, or go for a walk.

  6. Eat regular meals, even if you don’t feel hungry

    Looking after your physical well-being is important in times of stress.

  7. Try to sleep at regular times

    You may be having trouble sleeping. A routine for sleeping, or at least resting, is important when you have been through a stressful situation.

  8. Use your worry or anger for good

    Use this energy to clean your house or car, go for a walk, or a jog. Notice any small wins in the day and celebrate how well you are doing.

  9. Write, record or type out your thoughts and feelings

    It may help to write down your thoughts and feelings about what happened, to clarify them and get them out of your head.

  10. Find out about how other people have dealt with image-based abuse

    It can be helpful to read other people’s stories about how they responded after an intimate photo or video of them was shared without their consent.