Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Reclaiming Yourself

One of the most common things that I hear from survivors of sexual assault is they feel like they lost control of themselves. While this was true for a time physically, as the assault happened, it doesn't have to be true on an ongoing basis. 

Have you thought about taking a step to reclaim the emotional and physical control you lost during the assault? I know, that's more complicated than it sounds. In order to reclaim what was lost in the assault, a necessary step is to acknowledge to some degree that a sexual assault was committed. That you were victimized (though you do not have to be, by any means, a victim.) 

That's a harsh reality for anyone to face, and I wouldn't recommend doing it without the support of a licensed counselor trained in sexual assault recovery. 

Once you have connected with a counselor who gets you, you can work with him or her on ways to reclaim your body and mind.

Here are a few ideas to discuss with your sexual assault recovery therapist:

Journaling: When done purposefully, journaling can help you release and explore ideas you've held onto about the assault that are no longer serving you.

Body therapy: In wanting to reclaim ownership of your body, many men and women have explored ideas such as tattoos, piercings, improving physical fitness, makeovers, and more. When done with the attitude of celebrating your physical self and not self-harm, they can be quite restorative. 

Symbolic destruction of the past: (Safe) burning or burying of written declarations of past misconceptions such as self-blame, guilt, and shame. The destruction of these past thoughts represents that you are getting rid of the old to move forward with a healthier worldview. (You may even find it helpful to start with journaling therapy, and then move onto destruction of that journal later on.)

Investing in yourself: By this I mean investing time, energy or money in creating an even-better you! Have you always wanted to go back to college? Why not now? Have you thought about running a marathon? Maybe it's the time to hire a personal trainer to help you learn the physical discipline needed to complete a race of that magnitude. Whatever it is, I want you to know that it's okay to something positive for yourself. 

If you were to reclaim yourself today, what steps would be meaningful to you? How would you take back who you are and move forward? Comment below.

If you live in Dallas or Texas, you can contact me about sexual assault recovery therapy & counseling in Dallas or online. Find out more about my practice.


No comments:

Post a Comment