Many sexual abuse victims will not seek counseling for their abuse which is why I would like to offer three emotional healing techniques to help women overcome past hurts.
The Center for Disease Control reported that one in three women have experienced sexual violence at some point in their life. Do have any idea what that means? For every three women that you know, one of them have experienced some form of sexual violence.That’s astounding stats!
Many are probably wondering why I choose to be so vulnerable? Well, its simple for me. I never require things of other people that I am not willing to do myself. In saying, as a life consultant, I invite women to share sensitive details about their life and I want to create a space of safety so that you know that I am not just being nosey. Sis, I want you to be healed and whole and I know firsthand how hard that journey can be.
In saying, I want to pause to tell my story; to validate my own injustices and to stand in my own truth and to tell share how I began identifying my pain. I have been sexually violated four times in my life. Each time was different and each time was someone that I thought I knew AND trusted. The first time occurred when I was twelve, one at fourteen, fifteen, and in college. One day I looked at the person I had become and realized that I was angry, bitter, and was self-destructing yet I did not know why. By the time I made it to college, I was pregnant with my second child and was a shell of myself. I’d officially made it to my rock bottom and was crying out for some help to be pulled out. It was not until my 2nd year in college that I began going through the process of identifying the source of my behaviors.
Step 1: Make a list of your bad behaviors.
Friend, I wish I could tell you that there was some strategic list that I made that was nice, neat and organized but it was the opposite. It was raw, rough and was tear-stained. There were some areas that were scribbled out because I realized that I was not being honest with myself. Some of the other areas were written with much heavier penmenship because I was angry writing it. The purpose for doing this is to become brutally honest about your behaviors. Sis, I had over three pages of bad behaviors so don’t feel bad if yours is lengthy.
Step 2: Identify when the behavior began and why.
The next thing I did was identified when that behavior began. During this process you may experience feelings of shame and disgust towards yourself. I wrote more about feelings of shame and how to begin overcoming those here. I struggled with low self-esteem since childhood. I had to realize that behavior was connected to losing the only stable father I knew after my aunt divorced him when I was eleven. I did not have a father in my life feeding my self-esteem as fathers are supposed to do for their daughters. You will be amazed about when your behavior began and why. At this point, you will be tempted to stop but keep going. You’re on a journey of healing and sometimes we have to rip the bandaid off to heal the wound underneath but it has to be treated properly to heal.
Step 3: Take the list of negative behaviors and began replacing them with positive ones.
After identifying the source of your behaviors, the next step requires for you to decide whether or not you want to hold on to those behaviors or began working to change them. This is particularly hard because you are in a fight to change the identity you once knew. The parts of you that had developed as coping mechanisms to the pain. You are forced to decide whether or not you are really ready to change. I literally would grab the Bible and research every behavior in the Bible and choose scriptures that were aligned with who God said I am. For example, I came across a scripture in Psalms 139 that says, “You are fearfully and wonderfully made”.
I know this process sounds kinda corny but friend, there is so much power in feeding yourself on the truth about who you are verses the person that was created as a result of emotional pain. As a Christian, feeding my spirit on what God said about me literally gave me life and empowered me to want to do better.
How do you know that you are ready to begin this process?
I get asked this question often. Sure, you’ve made some progress and you may have stored it in the back of your mind, but you realize that you are not walking in complete wholeness. You may begin to realize that you are no longer comfortable with the person you have become or are no longer comfortable hanging around the people you hang around. Some people began remembering details about their past out of nowhere. Walking in wholeness means that you have to acknowledge your pain before the healing process can begin.
If you find yourself looking for answers or noticing that you’re going in the same cycles, that may be a cue to begin the healing process. I know you may be wondering, “why do I need to go back and dig up the past in order to move forward?” You may also be wondering how to make the first step or what is the first step? My dear sister, you are so worth every bit of going through this process. The other version of you on the other side of this is so much better than the person you see today.
Sis, this post is for you!
I am passionate about seeing others who have gone through traumatic experiences heal and recover. Confronting past painful issues as such is hard and in some cases, isolating. You want to know what I decided? I decided to choose ME and to leave a healthier legacy for my children and generations to come. I wanted to establish the “new norm” for my family and I decided to be free.
So here I am, telling my story, not just for me, but for someone who may still be writing theirs. Allow me to reintroduce myself…Hi, my name is Tiffany and I am no longer a sexual abuse victim. I am a VICTOR!