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Dealing with Sexual Trauma

Unwitnessed and unseen wounding of sexual abuse can manifest in these ways. Filled with Shame. Confusion. Denial. Anger. Numbness. The world in which you knew it is over and we grieve the sense of loss of a safe world. You might blame yourself. People might blame you. Very unfortunately, in today’s world we continue to hold victims/survivors accountable for their abuse. We revictimize them when we don’t believe them and blame them. You may very well feel lonely after this experience. Maybe you were 6. Maybe you were 14. Maybe you were 21.

Sexual trauma is one event or a prolonged series of events…many times from someone we trusted- family member, friend, partner. My former instructor, Dr. Richard Gartner, coined the term sexual betrayal because sexual abuse is a violation and betrayal to the spirit.

Some people deal with their untold stories through substances, gambling, putting themselves in danger, self harm, avoiding deep emotional relationships with others, become depressed, anxious, overprotective of themselves, overwhelmed, numb, anger, and a plethora of other ways. It isn’t until we begin to be honest with ourselves about the pain we’re in, tell a friend, therapist, or someone we can still believe in (or at least can take the risk believing in) that the uphill battle to healing begins.

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