Overcoming Sexual Abuse and Trauma

Overcoming Sexual Abuse and Trauma

Sexual abuse and trauma can mean quite a few different things. It can happen on a single occasion or multiple occasions. This can be rape, sexual harassment, being touched inappropriately, being forced to accomplish or involve oneself in sexual pursuit, or threat of physical injury if you do not comply with the sexual action. Many people think that  sexual trauma has to be traumatic and violent; actually, many of sexual harassments that take place do not have a violent manner, but alternatively are put into action with a harm, threat or embarrassment for the involved person. Sexual abuse and trauma is shocking when the victim develops a sense of helplessness, fear, damage or threat of injury. One person’s reaction to abuse and trauma could be very different from another in spite of very similar circumstances.

Common Responses to Sexual Abuse and Trauma

An individual’s reaction to sexual abuse will vary as time goes by. It is usual to develop feelings of grief, fear, sadness, and outside feelings of dizziness, nausea, alterations in appetite, and transformations in patterns of sleep. Responses to the sexual abuse and trauma can stay for a number of weeks to months prior to beginning to act normal again. A large number of people account to feeling better in the duration of about three months after the incidence. Nevertheless, if the feelings worsen or stay for a long time, you might be suffering from   depression. If you have been handling intense to average signs for more than three months, it is recommended that you contact a mental health expert.

The following are just  a few responses to sexual abuse and trauma:

  • Problems with concentration or thinking
  • Shortened focus span
  • Lack of focus
  • Disorientation
  • Confusion
  • Indecisiveness
  • Loss of memory
  • Bad memories
  • Hardship making decisions

Emotional Responses

  • Numbness
  • Shock
  • Sadness
  • Feeling overpowered
  • Feeling lost
  • Feeling abandoned
  • Fear of harm to everyone
  • Feeling nothing
  • Volatile feelings
  • Uncertainty of feelings

   Physical Responses

  • Lightheadedness
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Gastro-intestinal issues
  • Tremors
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Jumpiness
  • Grinding of teeth
  • Poor sleep
  • Pain

Behavioral Responses

  • Being suspicious
  • Irritability
  • Excessive silence
  • Arguments with everyone
  • Poor or increased eating
  • Withdrawal from activities and everyone
  • Poor or increased sleep
  • Change in functioning or sexual desire


It is of help to be aware that all of these signs are normal  reactions to an event that is abnormal. Nevertheless, if you feel as if one of these is an issue for you or is interfering with your life, it is important  for you to visit a mental health doctor that can assist you with these issues.

Overcoming Sexual Abuse and Trauma

First of all, it is important  to protect yourself. If you are presently included in a relationship that is not safe or feel unprotected in your residence, then you need to find a surrounding where you feel protected and safe. If you are involved  in a relationship that is abusive,  seek help from the police.

At the same time that physical protection is important, emotional protection is also important. If you involve yourself in behaviors that may be of self- harm such as restricting, cutting, purging food, or drug and alcohol abuse, it is recommended that you seek help from a mental health expert before you make a move on working on your sexual trauma. Solving trauma problems can be hard, and if you are harming yourself, it is best  to solve these problems before starting to find solutions for the trauma. In some situations sexual abuse and trauma can cause Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). If you suspect that you have PTSD it is important to seek help from a licensed mental health practitioner such as psychologist or psychiatrist.

You should accept that whatever you are feeling is all right and congratulate yourself for passing through a rough experience. Say these words repeatedly : “It is not my fault”.


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