Your Child's Appearance in Court

Before your child appears in court, find out whether you will be able to be present in court with your child. Ask if a support person (such as a victim/witness advocate, relative or friend) may be in court when the child testifies.

On the day of the courtroom trial, have a good breakfast and try to relax as much as you can. You and your child should dress neatly and comfortably. Since there may be long periods of waiting and unforeseen delays, bring with you some quiet toys to amuse your child, such as crayons, a book, or a doll, and some snack food. You and your child should not discuss the case with each other or anyone else. Ask your child to think carefully about the details of the testimony he or she will give.

After the Courtroom Testimony

After the testimony is over, reassure your child that he or she testified well and that you are proud. You may not know the outcome of the trial, or it may not be in your favor; nevertheless, telling what happened was the right action to take.

Your child may have some stress-related sleep problems, worries, or feelings of insecurity for a day or two. You should consider professional counseling for your child to help him or her deal with any long-lasting trauma of the victimization as well as the entire judicial process.