Emotional support

A victim of crime being offered support in a one to one session.

Being a victim of crime can affect your physical, emotional and mental health and wellbeing, as well as that of witnesses and loved ones.

It can affect finances and relationships, and impact your life in many different ways.

Victim Support Scotland is here to support you. It’s natural to experience a range of emotions such as anxiety, confusion and anger. You may feel completely overwhelmed and unclear about what you should do next.

We can help you understand what you’re going through, cope with how you are feeling and manage your emotional stress.

There are a number of reactions and emotions often shared by victims of crime:

  • A fear of leaving the house
  • Flashbacks to the event
  • Nightmares
  • A sense of being overwhelmed
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Tearfulness
  • Self-blame

Some people will recover after a few weeks, but for others, the experience is far more traumatic and long-lasting.

It’s important to remember that these reactions are normal and that everyone responds differently.

We’ve prepared a simple questionnaire to help you assess your feelings. You can download the questionnaire here Common Reactions After A Crime.

You may not feel able to talk to friends and family, especially if they are affected by the crime too. Victim Support Scotland offers a safe place for anyone affected by crime to talk about fears, worries and emotions. We also provide the support you need to cope with emotional stress.

Our staff and volunteers are trained to listen, give information and offer feedback. We can help make sense of what you have been through, discuss options and help you to feel you are getting your life under control again. Talking with us gives you the chance to offload and identify ways to move forward after a distressing experience.

“VSS offered some hope to help deal with the horrible, confusing and frightening situation…They listened, understood and helped me cope.” – Anna

We do not offer a counselling service, but we can help you understand and cope with how you are feeling. Our service is confidential*, so we will not discuss personal details with anyone else without permission. You don’t need to report the crime to the police to receive help from us.

We also provide practical support from helping you complete insurance forms to navigating the criminal justice system.

*We will need to alert someone else if there is a safeguarding issue or a risk to others.

Whoever you are and whatever the crime, we’re here to help