I Have PTSD From Sexual Assault and I’m Strugglign in Therapy
I suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) after experiencing sexual assault and am currently struggling in therapy. A traumatic event such as sexual assault can leave an imprint on one’s mind; it’s normal to experience feelings of anger, fear, rage and guilt afterwards.
Good news: Most survivors of sexual assault will find relief from these symptoms within a few months after the trauma. Unfortunately, some may continue to struggle with them years later.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is the most common mental illness experienced by those who have experienced sexual violence. Victims often report nightmares, flashbacks, difficulty sleeping, changes in appetite and other symptoms that are difficult to cope with.
Many survivors experience their life being altered irrevocably and are uncertain what to do next. Furthermore, they may struggle with daily tasks and relationships due to the trauma experienced.
It is essential for those affected by sexual trauma to recognize that they are not alone and there is help available. Psychologist Lee Salas emphasizes the social stigma associated with sexual assault can create new issues for survivors and make it harder for them to seek assistance.
Talking about your experiences will give you insight into how they affect you and give you the chance to process them more fully. Plus, doing so in a safe space with an experienced professional is invaluable for working through them.
Writing about your experience can be a powerful way to cope with memories of trauma. By recording your memories, you will be better able to recall them clearly and more readily when needed.
Your doctor can prescribe medication to help reduce symptoms of PTSD. Medication is usually combined with therapy, and its effectiveness must be regularly reviewed by your healthcare provider.
Psychotherapy is an effective treatment for most PTSD symptoms and will assist you in learning how to reprocess your memories. This may involve teaching you techniques for dealing with triggers like reliving sexual experiences or making more aware of how emotions impact behavior.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) are two forms of psychotherapy. These treatments teach specific skills to control and manage your PTSD symptoms, making them highly successful for most rape survivors.
Finding a therapist you feel comfortable with and who understands the impact of your trauma is essential. A good therapist will offer information and coping tools, but they won’t necessarily solve or cure your issues.
You must be willing to discuss your sexual abuse with a therapist and acknowledge that you may have PTSD. Unfortunately, having a therapist who doesn’t listen or makes you uncomfortable will only worsen the problem.
Your trauma will shape how you view the world and those in it. This may cause you to lack trust in others and feel as though everyone is out to get you.