Are You Struggling With The Aftereffects Of Sexual Trauma?
If you've experienced sexual trauma, you may be dealing with a number of difficult feelings, such as anger, guilt, or shame. These painful feelings can be overwhelming, and often interfere with everyday life.
They may have started to affect your relationships. You might find it’s more difficult to trust others. It’s possible you feel jumpy and defensive, and because of that struggle to go out or spend time with loved ones.
You might struggle to get out of bed in the morning. Scenes related to what happened may seep into your dreams or waking life in the form of nightmares, flashbacks, or frightening thoughts. To avoid certain triggers, you may find that you go out of your way to steer clear of particular places, sounds, or smells.
Maybe you've had people tell you've got to get over it, forgive, or let it go. Although I am sure they meant well, it can feel like they are implying that you are choosing these symptoms. No wonder many people who experience this feel isolated and alone. You probably want to heal, but you aren’t sure how. You just want to feel okay.
A Staggering Number Of People Experience Sexual Trauma
It may feel like you are all alone in dealing with these experiences, but it is all too common. Here are some statistics*:
• Every 98 seconds an American is sexually assaulted.
• Each year there are around 321,500 victims of sexual assault. About 30 percent of graduate students in mental health professions are thought to be survivors of sexual trauma. Women aged 15-44 are more at risk from rape and domestic violence than from cancer, car accidents, war and malaria, according to World Bank data.
And it’s not just women: 1 in 6 men are sexually abused before the age of 18, and 2.78 million men have been victims of attempted or completed rape. Additionally, about 2 percent of children have experienced sexual assault or abuse during the past year.
These are some staggering numbers. They are also fairly old statistics, and, from what we’ve seen from the #MeToo movement, likely way understated.
Many people who have experienced sexual trauma continue to struggle with disturbing symptoms, sometimes for years. Symptoms like flashbacks, shame, or defensiveness prevent them from having the energy or attention to put toward what matters most to them.
But you don’t have to go through this alone. By working together, I can help you get past the effects of trauma and come to a place of peace.
Trauma Therapy Can Help You Heal
Neuroscience has taught us we heal through experiences.
Powerful experiences actually rewire the brain. The therapy I use was developed to take advantage of that and to rewire the brain in such a way so that it heals. I specialize in Rapid Resolution Therapy® (RRT), which integrates therapeutic tools in a way that synergistically creates powerful, transformational healing experiences. The brain’s routine responses are re-patterned so that future responses are more in sync with what's actually happening, rather than responding to a past event.
This unique approach is different from—and works faster than—"normal" therapy. There is no need for you to have to talk a lot about yourself. I will not be asking you a bunch of probing questions. We don't have to figure out why you were doing things or not doing things. You absolutely do not have to deal with painful emotions, nor do you have to "process" them or "get them out" to get better.
I offer a warm, calming environment where we can work together to clear away the negative effects of what happened. And whether change happens is totally on me, not you. I take full responsibility for how a session turns out.
The first thing we'll do is make sure that my approach makes sense to you. I will share with you an alternative way to think that gives us more power to get things done. If what I share makes sense to you, you'll catch me up with a brief description of what happened to you and what your life has been like as a result.
From there, we'll take a look at what it will be like when the pain and turmoil are gone. What will you be doing? How will you be feeling? This gives us a great target and direction for where we are headed.
With an understanding of what's been going on for you and a clear picture of where we're headed, I'm ready to roll. I’ll guide you through experiences you are likely already somewhat familiar with that involve things like mindfulness, therapeutic stories, movement, imagery, or play. The ways these experiences work together synergistically to engage different parts of the mind is what makes this approach so powerful. The changes that happen are effortless for you. You will find them to be automatic and natural, yet lasting.
I usually see my clients for less than five sessions. My main focus is to clear away symptoms so that relief is either experienced right away or sets in over the next few days. Ultimately, my clients don't have to worry about triggers anymore because they are no longer triggered.
I've helped many clients get rid of stubborn, long-enduring symptoms that resulted from deeply troubling events. The dreariness and dread they walk with is replaced with an ease and lightness they hadn’t imagined they could ever experience.
If you are suffering, you don't have to any longer. After meeting with me, you will likely discover you are able to talk about what happened without any of the upsetting emotions. What happened can become less of a significant force in your lives, and more of just something that happened.
Sounds Good But, You Still Have Questions About Trauma Therapy
What If It All Comes Flooding Back?
One of the things that I love about RRT is that I can keep that from happening. There is absolutely no reason for you to have to re-experience painful, terrifying events. One of my central goals is to prevent you from experiencing that.
What If My Problems Are Too Big?
It has been my experience that the more distressful things have been for someone, the more dramatic the results of therapy. This is because a lot of energy is expended when dealing with turmoil. Once the distress is relieved, all that energy is available for more beneficial uses.
What If I Don't Remember What Happened?
It is not uncommon for people to be unable to recall what happened to them. An experience could have happened during early childhood, or be suppressed from memory. Regardless of the reason, my unique approach to therapy means remembering isn’t required in order for you to clear any unwanted effects from the event.
Trauma Therapy Can Help You Be Free and Clear
Overcoming trauma can be hard, but it doesn't have to be. Together we can get you well.
photo credit: Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash.com.
*statistics compiled from: US Department of Veteran Affairs - National Center for PTSD, Adams & Riggs, 2008, American Psychological Association, 2/19/14, Rainn.org, JAMA Pediatrics,May 2013.