This is a really big topic. I am diving into it because I know I am not alone. And I want to help!
My story. You can read about my own #metoo here.
I thought I was broken. I thought I was the problem. I moved forward with my life. But this underlying low self-worth hid in the corners of my being.
Now I want to stand up for myself and other women. I have something to say.
Please do not dismiss any degree of sexual abuse. Molestation. Harassment. Assault. Sex Work. Escorting. Whatever label has been put on it. Whatever box it has been put in. Because I did. And it cost me.
What I am realizing as I get to the bottom of my own trauma and as I untangle it for what it was, is that everything factors in. Power dynamics, the way others handled it, the way society handles it.
Sexual abuse is not just about sex. It is often about emotional betrayal, deep attachment wounds, dysfunctional family patterns; misuse of power.
What I thought was a happenstance and minor “molest,” turned out to be the key and pivotal moment in my life. This event spurred over two decades of body and mind healing, searching for answers, suffering from chronic pain and fatigue, feeling hopeless and depressed. Ultimately it led me to become the coach that I am and to finally get the resources and healing that I needed. I am so grateful for this!
It’s important to get this straight.
If there are/were family dynamics, relationship dynamics, age differences, role differentials, power dynamics; if the event was met with shame, downplaying, dismissal, blame, convincing, or avoidance; if it involves anything to do with sexuality: it is sexual abuse!
Sexual abuse has long and far reaching effects on mind, spirit, and emotions, not just body. In my next blog, I will share with you why I think sexual abuse is tied to chronic autoimmune disorders in women. There is research backing this.
I have my own anecdotal research.
But what I want to say the most is: please do not downplay your experience! Even if everyone else does or did. Your body and mind knows.
If you or someone you know has experienced ANY DEGREE of sexual abuse and needs help, here are some recommended resources from my own healing journey and from the experience of coaching others.
First of all, please call your nearest crisis line or police department to report sexual abuse. It is a crime!
If you need someone to talk to and to start the healing process, it’s important to seek body-based, somatic, and trauma-based therapies. These people can really help! Seek a therapist who has one or more of the following qualifications:
- 1) EMDR Therapy
- 2) Somatic Experiencing
- 3) Somatic Relational Therapy
- 4) Hakomi Body-Based Psychotherapy
- 5) Somatica® Sex & Relationship Coaching (this is what I practice)
- 6) Somatic Sex Education Bodywork Sessions
- 7) Psychosomatic Sex Therapy
You can Google any of these and see who is closest to you and who you resonate with. If you, or a friend of yours would like to speak with me, I offer free 15 minute consults that you can access here.
Thank you for receiving me in this important and personal (but universal) topic. My life, health and relationship have totally transformed by putting a stop to the dismissal of my own experience.
I know there can be a lot of guilt and shame involved. Especially if you feel you instigated in some way. Especially if you even enjoyed some part of it. It’s okay!! AND you need support.
I’m here for you.
In love & service.