Survivor of sexual trauma
Please be advised this post has a *Trigger Warning.*
“Until it happens to you, you don’t know how it feels..Till your world burns and crashes
Till you’re at the end, the end of your rope
Till you’re standing in my shoes
I don’t wanna hear a thing from you, from you, from you
Cause you don’t know..” – Lady Gaga
A reflection of the pain and struggle of survivors of sexual betrayal. A video that demonstrates the anguish survivors carry in their hearts and spirits–adult survivors of sexual assault in universities, date rape, molestation from family members or trusted loved ones, authority figures, teachers, babysitters, partners, clergymen, and others…all the while being re-victimized by systemic aggression from institutions such as universities, the church, the judicial court system, and society as a whole that don’t believe them or support them. We see it on the news, TV shows, talk shows–how disturbingly common sexual betrayal is and how society responds to victims of assault or incestuous acts through victim blaming. Often times, survivors are left on their own to try to symbolize their traumatic experience because even well-intention family members or friends aren’t aware of how to support or respond to survivors. Survivors are sometimes told to “move on” and pick themselves up by the boot straps, and that expectation not only is hurtful and dismissive, but also unrealistic. Survivors need a safe space to share their deepest emotions, that at times can feel conflicting, without the judgment from the outside world…and the outside world must take care to avoid minimizing, dismissing, or re-traumatizing survivors with micro-aggressions.
It is also not uncommon for survivors that have not dealt with their own traumatic pasts to find themselves also dismissing another survivor’s sexual trauma. I find this is common among non-offending parents that have a difficult time believing their child when their child says they were sexually abused by a loved one. These parents can become stuck in denial and refuse to accept their child’s account of abuse, partly due to their own refusal in accepting their own sexual abuse. Thus, they reject the child’s story and continue the cycle of pain.
Pain that is not transformed is transferred. Please know that if you have experienced sexual abuse as a child, sexual trauma as an adult, there is help out there. Please know that it is not your fault, and that you are worthy of support, respect, dignity, and the right kind of love. You are also worthy of living in a safe world where you don’t have to worry about being violated of your body, mind, and spirit. There is help out there, know that you have a right to help and healing.
Crime victims hotline 866-689-4357
Rape, sexual assault and incest hotline: 212-227-3000
National suicide hotline: 800-784-2433
Suicide prevention hotline – the Samaritans of New York: 212-673-3000
National Trafficking Resource Center- 1-888-373-7888