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Sometimes You Just Have to Get Through the Day.

Drink a cup of tea. I recommend Celestial Seasonings Tension Tamer. It always makes me feel a little more relaxed on really bad days.

Listen to music, especially Tori Amos. I find that if I sing along with her and really listen to the words, it helps me get some of my feelings out. I usually end up crying (and probably horrifying my neighbors with my singing), which always makes me feel better.

Exercise. Whatever this means to you: walk, run, bike, roller skate (for me it means that I walk up all four flights of stairs to my dorm room).

Write. Many survivors write poetry, others keep journals. Getting your thoughts down on paper can help them makes sense and seem a little less scary.

Start a website of your own. They are amazingly therapeutic. You can do this through Angelfire.

Talk to someone you trust. Every time you break the silence and trust someone, you are one step farther in your healing journey. Telling someone what happened to you is scary, but you will feel a lot better afterward.

Talk to other survivors. Sometimes we are unable to talk to our family and friends. Through the internet, we are blessed with the ability to speak with others who have been through similar situations. The people who understand the most are those who has been through it.

Talk to a counselor, either in your town, at your school or through RAINN at 1-800-656-HOPE.

Read a good book. It doesn't have to be about sexual assault. Great books can be an much-needed escape on some days.

Take a nap. Sometimes I need to curl up with my panda-bear and go to sleep. Naps can help you deal with stressful days. Just make sure to be aware of how much you are sleeping; excessive sleep is an indication of serious depression.

Get a pet. At home, my dog was the faithful companion who licked my face when I cried (so I would inevitably end up laughing and saying "Ew! Stop licking me!"). Now that I'm at college, I have fish. There's something about being relied on by an animal that makes you feel a little stronger.

Distractions Suggested by Other Survivors

Try alternative remedies. Valerin root is good for a sleep aide if you are having trouble sleeping and Kava Kava is used to help you stay calm. You can buy these at most health food stores, but make sure to check with your doctor before taking them because they can react with certain medications.

When you get overwhelmed with work or school, make a checklist of everything you need to do. Organization can really help you hold on in a crisis.

Start a tradition - do something nice for yourself at least once a week. One survivor said, "every Sunday morning, I went to Starbucks, grabbed some coffee, read the Sunday paper and then occasionally went to Barnes and Noble, fluffed myself down in a comfy chair and caught up on some books and magazines that looked exciting!"

Buy Simple Abundance : A Daybook of Comfort and Joy by Sarah Ban Breathnach. It has lots of suggestions to help you feel better.

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