Impact of sexual trauma
Rape and sexual abuse are crimes of violence and humiliation which can be devastating. Often, though not always, the abuser is already known to the person they attack. Nobody invites rape or abuse. Rape and sexual abuse are always the responsibility of the abuser. Always.
Everybody’s reaction is unique; and whatever feelings you may be having are valid. If you have been raped or sexually abused as an adult and/or as a child, you might be experiencing some or all of the following:
- A sense of powerlessness
- Feeling numb or confused
- Shock and disbelief
- Fear and nervousness
- Flashbacks and nightmares
- Panic attacks
- Fear of not being believed
- Self-doubt and low self-esteem
- Obsessive behaviour
- Loss of self-care
- Feelings of disconnectedness – ‘zoning out’ of the world around you
- Self-defeating behaviour such as drinking too much alcohol, taking drugs, or other forms of self-harm
This is not intended to be an exhaustive list but is an indication of the wide range of reactions different people have.
You may still be feeling the consequences of sexual trauma, no matter how long ago it was. Traumatic experiences can feel just as real today as they did when they happened. You may find that certain experiences in your life, perhaps when you are feeling trapped or powerless, are likely to stir up memories of being raped or abused
Working with one of our trained practitioners might be a good way of dealing with those memories. If you would like help with thinking about how Survive might help, or what other services might help you in North Yorkshire, please contact us. And remember, it is never too late to get help.