A sexual assault can turn your world upside down. You may notice that you are triggered by innocuous situations, such as standing in line at the grocery store or driving past a particular building. You may have nightmares or flashbacks of the assault, and you might be having trouble coping with the trauma and aftermath caused by sexual assault. Sexual assault counselling is a safe space to be able to speak about what happened and learn ways to cope with the trauma of being sexually assaulted.
People often blame themselves for being sexually assaulted, and you may have feelings of shame or guilt after being sexually assaulted. You may notice that you have become self-destructive in any number of ways, from isolating yourself to binge eating or even turning to drugs and alcohol to cope. One of the first steps in healing is to be able to talk to someone about what happened. Sexual assault counselling is a safe, open, and supportive environment where you can talk about what happened and work through the trauma and aftermath with a professional who is understanding and trained to help. Some of the benefits of sexual assault counselling are as follows:
Processing Long-Standing Trauma
Sexual assault counselling can help you no matter how long ago the assault(s) happened. Many people were sexually assaulted as children, and without therapy, they may have lasting effects into adulthood. Don’t put off treatment because “it happened a long time ago.” Old trauma is still trauma, and you may have issues rooted in your childhood sexual assault that are not your fault.
Improved Interpersonal Relationships
It is common for sexual assault to have long-lasting effects on the victim’s interpersonal relationships. You may find it difficult to form bonds with new people, or even trust people you already know well. Being intimate with another person can seem terrifying and daunting, causing you to isolate yourself. Sexual assault therapy can help you begin healing and improve your interpersonal relationships.
Open and Honest Communication
Speaking with a therapist offers the unique benefit of speaking with someone who is unrelated to your personal life. When speaking with a therapist, there is no judgement, no repercussions for complete transparency, and the security of confidentiality of conversations.
New Coping Skills
Therapy offers new ways to cope that sexual assault victims may have yet to consider. Learning and re-learning healthy ways to cope is part of an effective treatment plan. Sexual assault counsellors are highly trained in ways to compassionately help their clients cope with the most sensitive of topics.
Overall Better Mental Health
If your sexual assault happened more recently, you might feel like you are alone and unable to trust people. Isolation can be dangerous; if you notice that you are having trouble dealing with day to day life after a sexual assault, counselling can help. Sexual abuse and assault are events that can cause debilitating PTSD, depression, and anxiety. You don’t have to live with these conditions for the rest of your life; sexual assault counselling can help you to heal and learn how to control how your body and mind react to triggers that may cause flashbacks, anxiety or panic attacks, and depression. Seeking professional sexual assault therapy can be a step towards better overall mental health.
Sexual Assault Counselling in Toronto
Whether you are just beginning your healing process or you are seeking help with trauma from your childhood, sexual assault counseling is beneficial. Sexual assault counselling in Toronto doesn’t have to be scary; contact Laurenne Samuel to take the first step in reclaiming your power and your life.
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