Guest Author - Marisa Seale
In this article I mean to share a few ways victims may react to the abuse they suffered as a child.
The first one is by completely withdrawing from people so as to ensure that they never find themselves in a situation where they could be hurt again. This is greatly detrimental as it affects their ability to be independent, to experience joy and it keeps them from obtaining the vital support they need to work through their abuse issues. Because of their inability to form even superficial relationships; they strive to work from home, isolating themselves even further which in turn can lead to additional problems like obesity, anxiety, depression, phobia’s to mention a few. For the person finding themselves in this position there is hope: a person that is committed to you; that will stick by you through thick and thin, to restore strand by strand the trust in humanity and yourself that you have lost and the grace of God when you have nobody but yourself.
The second way is when they are so broken by the abuse that association with their bodies have been lost. They give their bodies freely to anyone and everyone; seeking “love & acceptance” in all the wrong places with all the wrong people. This can lead to serious health problems, compounded emotional abuse because they will be further abused by people around them for being promiscuous and this behaviour only reinforces their own belief of not being good enough to name one. The sad thing is that many victims of abuse stay in this cycle their entire lives; many bringing children into this world to perpetuate the cycle unless they choose to face their childhood abuse issues by changing their thoughts and joining a support group or committing to seeing a therapist until they have worked through all the negativity of the past.
Another way victims react is to forcibly reclaim the sexuality that was lost by saying : “I will not allow what happened to me to dictate the enjoyment of an intimate relationship in my life, I will enjoy a healthy physical relationship”. The problem here is that personal power is supposedly taken back by actually denying the profound affects of the childhood abuse! It can also cause a feeling of being so strong when you are actually very fragile inside. This person does not necessarily sleep around much, but instead brainwashes themselves into believing they are indeed enjoying being intimate in the few relationships they may have when they are not.
The above are only a few ways to react on childhood abuse. The choice is to be survivors or victors in our lives. Let’s choose victory!