After hate - getting support

As a victim or witness of hate, there really isn't a book to read to tell you how to 'get over' your experience.

The truth is that varying aspects of it will be forgotten quickly while others may continue to affect you for a much longer period of time.

The experience is wholly personal so, although others may have been through a similar incident, no-one can truly know how you feel. This is why it is so important to talk about it.

You may not want to at first, but close family and friends can be great sounding boards or just good to have near while you work through it - remember that you don't have to suffer alone.

Of course, professional help is available. The usual practice across forces in the UK if you report a hate incident is that your case, with your permission, will be passed over to Victim Support who will be in touch very soon after the event.

They offer emotional support and can talk to you about what you have experienced from a knowledgable point of view, but they also offer practical help for getting your life back on track - help dealing with the police, filling in forms, security advice and more.

For advice on LGBT issues you can email the LGF Helpline or call on 0845 3 30 30 30, for specific help relating to being a victim or a witness you can email the Victim Supportline or call them on 0845 30 30 900.