How to overcome Sexual Assault and Abuse

Harassment, sexual assault, and violence are crimes that are unacceptable and obscene. These crimes are usually committed in the private spaces of homes or committed by people who are close to or have trust in. This is not only unacceptable, but embarrassing too. Sexual assault victims being harassed, abused, and assaulted, typically prefer to keep their experiences from the public eye, in fear of that they will be blamed.

Sexual violence is any type of sexual assault, that include molestation of children, rape, incest and other kinds of non-consensual sexual interactions. Examples of sexual harassment are explicit remarks, demands for physical contact or sexual intimacy, demands to have consensual sex as a condition of the opportunity to work or for other benefits. Sexual assault, however, is an assault that is sexual in nature, that includes sexual contact or the act of rape. Sexual abuse is basically sexual assault that occurs for a longer amount of time.

Effects from Sexual Assault and Abuse on mental health

Many survivors report feeling like fear, shame, and guilt. A lot are blamed for their own actions. Because of the stress and negative emotions that are triggered by sexual abuse, survivors are at risk of developing mental health issues. Sexual abuse survivors may suffer from:

  • Depression: A loss of autonomy in the body is usually difficult to deal with. It can trigger feelings of despair or hopelessness. It can also diminish the self-esteem of a person. The symptoms of depression can be short-lived and sporadic, or they may be severe and lasting.
  • Anxiety: Loss of bodily autonomy may also trigger extreme anxiety. The victims may be worried that the attack might happen again. There are those who suffer panic attacks. Some may experience agoraphobia, and be afraid to leave their home. In certain instances, the victim might develop a fear of the victim. A person who was raped by an attractive, tall man with blue eyes could naturally dislike, distrust and fear all men with the same characteristics.
  • In certain instances, flashbacks could be so intense that they make the victim lose track of the surroundings. One may be affected by a similar disorder called complicated posttraumatic stress (C-PTSD). C-PTSD causes a constant anxiety about being abandoned, along with the symptoms typical of PTSD. Certain people suffering from C-PTSD have personality changes.
  • Personality disturbances: Sexual abuse may cause personality disturbances, like borderline personalities. The behaviours associated to personality disorders could be an adaptation to abuse. One example of the borderline personality is a fear abandonment. This fear may not be adaptable in later life. But avoiding being abandoned could have safeguarded one from abuse in their childhood.
  • Issues with attachment: The survivors might have difficulty forming solid bonds with others. This is especially the case for children who were abused. Adults who suffered abuse as children could be prone to unsecure attachment patterns. They may have difficulty forming intimate relationships or be keen to create close relationships.
  • The study suggests that that abuse survivors are more likely than 26 other people to abuse drugs. Alcohol and drugs may help to ease the pain caused by addiction. But substance abuse is often the cause to the emergence of various problems.

Speak to someone that is concerned about you.

Talk to someone you trust like your teacher, online counsellor, or someone you love and tell them about the issue. them. Sexual predators are reliant on your silence and burying their secrets, however, you can break the cycle by speaking with someone about what’s happening to you. Inform someone as quickly as you can.  Having a strong support system within yourself has proven to be one of the most beneficial actions you can take to deal with the effects of sexual assault and its aftermath.  

Accept that it’s not your fault.

A very crucial steps to recognize and escape the grips of sexual assault is to recognize that it’s not the fault of you to be or have been victimized. The feeling of guilt or shame may occur, whether due to the actions of the perpetrator or the way you’re treated by those you speak to and it’s crucial not to let this stop you from speaking to others about it and seeking assistance for yourself. It is important to remember that being victimized or abused by another person is not the fault of you.

Show some compassion to yourself.

After an abuse or assault you may need several days before returning to your normal self. In this period, you might be discontent, however it is essential to not put your anger on yourself. Accept that you’ll need time to recover, and it is a difficult process. Let yourself be overwhelmed by sadness, anger or confusion. You will experience many other emotions. This is an expected element of healing.

Connect with other victims of abuse.

While healing as you heal, you’ll have to continue to talk to those who are understanding and caring. Consider joining the support group for victims of sexual assault to meet people who understand what you’re experiencing. Support groups are an environment where you can share your story and listen to what other survivors have gone through and can aid you in understanding that you’re not the only one.

Get Treatment

It is strongly recommended to seek treatment earlier instead of later. The most easily visible benefits are a shorter time to receive treatment is speedier recovery and the less time you spend missing out from life. From a medical viewpoint, suffering and stress is significantly diminished when one seeks treatment early. You can take online counselling can speak out your problem in more confidential manner. 

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