In my professional life, I work with young people. A few days ago, one of them, a college student who is 21, with whom I have worked for a few years, was having a crisis situation during which he asked if we could speak, and so we did. Sometimes the work is a lot of listening. In this case, though, I found it difficult to listen because what he described in my view was perpetrating a rape. (No one involved is a minor.) I did not name it in that way, partly because there were a myriad of issues. Inside, though, I found myself feeling very angry, and it was difficult for me to listen.


I shared this with my boss, who knows that I am a rape survivor, and she reassured me that it's okay to detach and that it's okay not to be able to deal with every situation - that even professionals sometimes need to take themselves out of a situation. I feel lucky to have her support, and while I don't yet know an answer about what I will say to this young person, among my range of options is the choice of letting someone else handle it.