A staggering number of females have experienced rape, sexual assault, or another type of unwanted sexual encounter at some point in their lives. It’s difficult to pinpoint precisely how many, largely because many victims do not report the incident. Some women prefer to try to forget about it or act as though it never happened, although neither strategy is a healthy way to cope. If you’re looking for how to recover and heal from sexual abuse trauma, this post can be helpful.
Every woman will have to come to grips with what took place in their own time. Just like the grieving process, everyone does it differently, and there is no wrong way. However, many women struggle to get their life back on track post-rape or sexual assault.
Let’s look at four ways a woman might try to become mentally and emotionally whole again after this horrific occurrence.
Pursue charges against the attacker to heal from sexual trauma
Regrettably, the stats say that most women know their attacker. Boyfriend or husband rapes or sexual assaults happen way more than stranger attacks. A woman might decide to hire a sex crimes lawyer and go after her assailant in court.
When you pursue legal action, it is important to know that you may need to get a restraining order against the perpetrator If your husband or live-in boyfriend was the one who committed the act, you can either order them to move out of the house, or you can move out herself. Having children with the attacker can further complicate matters.
If she wants to remain where she is, the court will likely make the husband or boyfriend move out instead. If the woman does file a restraining order, she’ll want regular police check-ins to make sure she’s okay.
Hopefully, there will be sufficient evidence to get a court to convict the attacker, and he will receive the appropriate punishment for his sadistic behavior.
Below are more ways to recover and heal from sexual trauma:
Get a divorce or separate
If the attacker was a husband or boyfriend, you can seek either a divorce or separation. You likely will not have trouble getting a court to comply if:
- There is physical assault evidence
- You can produce witnesses to the husband or boyfriend’s temperament or behavior
You will only be able to move on with her life once her attacker is no longer in the picture. Some women even decide to leave the city or state where the attack took place for an entirely fresh start somewhere else.
Take martial arts classes
Some women feel they need empowerment after an attack to heal from sexual trauma. They might decide that buying a gun is the way to go. If so, the woman will likely want to take some classes on how to use it, unless she already learned how at some point in the past.
I do not advocate guns in the house, personally. If you feel the same way as me, you might prefer to take some martial arts classes to learn self-defense techniques. There are options like karate, Tai Kwon Do, judo, and others.
Any of them can make you more confident and help you deal with some of the anger you might be experiencing right now. You might also decide to start carrying a different weapon if you don’t want to buy a gun, such as pepper spray or an extendable baton.
Seek therapy to recover and heal from sexual trauma
A sexual assault or rape survivor might feel betrayed by her attacker if she knew and trusted the person. The love she had for this individual will likely be gone. If it was a stranger who was the attacker, that is no less traumatic.
A woman in this position should more than likely seek therapy from a professional counselor. It’s fine talking to a trusted loved one about what happened, but you might wish to speak to someone objective instead.
By “objective,” that means someone who you don’t see in your daily life. It might be easier to talk to a therapist about the trauma endured.
A rape or sexual assault survivor may want to do more than one thing on the list above. For instance, a woman might divorce her attacker and seek therapy while she works to regain her confidence.
Getting past such an awful incident is difficult, but it’s IS possible. You will have to call on your inner strength and resolve to carry on with life and heal from sexual abuse trauma.