How To Overcome Sexual Trauma
The experiences that we have throughout life leave us memories that last over time. Regardless of whether we consider the moments we have experienced to be good or bad, the truth is that the effect they have on us will depend on how we have experienced them. In general, there are several difficult situations linked to abuse that people living in complex family environments have to go through.
The consequences of sexual abuse, both in the body and in the personality, affect our emotions, thoughts, and behaviors. Having adequate resources when dealing with sexual trauma can help us cope with situations in a more enjoyable way. Do you want to know more about this? In this BuzzBongo article, we will provide you with information about how to overcome sexual trauma.
What is sexual trauma?
When we talk about sexual trauma, we refer to very unpleasant situations involving sexual abuse experienced by a person in the past. In other words, sexual traumas consist of events that leave mental memories in the person who has suffered them.
On the other hand, it can also happen that certain bodily manifestations appear as a result of sexual traumas that occurred in childhood.
Causes of sexual trauma
Being able to determine the origin of sexual trauma is crucial to establishing an adequate treatment for this type of problem. Next, we will see the most frequent causes that affect sexual trauma:
In general, sexual abuse is exercised by an adult on a boy or girl during their childhood, although it can also occur during adolescence and adulthood.
In other words, sexual abuse is a crime in which the abuser, without consent and with or without violence or intimidation, acts violating the sexual freedom of another person. This situation has a component that the abuser touches the genitals of the abused person or any part of the body without consent, such as the breasts or the butt.
It is also considered sexual abuse when the abuser shows or rubs his or her genitals against the victim or when he or she makes contact with him or her in the form of kisses or touching against his or her will.
As in sexual abuse, any unwanted sexual contact is considered rape. This act represents the excessive use of physical force and psychological abuse by the rapist since he can exert pressure through physical or emotional superiority to carry out the penetration against the will of the raped person. It can be any type of forced penetration: vaginal, oral, or anal. Symptoms of sexual trauma
Sexual traumas leave sequels in the person who has suffered such unpleasant situations in the past. To know how a person who has been sexually abused behaves, it is important to pay attention to the physical, emotional, and behavioral manifestations that a person who has sexual trauma presents to think of possible alternatives to these facts.
Next, we will describe the most important symptoms of sexual trauma:
- Distrust of the person towards himself and towards his environment.
- Fear of significant people in life.
- Changing mood.
- Impairment of interpersonal relationships.
- Decreased work and/or academic performance.
- Isolation from other people.
- Low self-esteem.
- Feeling of guilt.
- Difficulties in memory and concentration.
- Sleeping problems.
- Difficulties in sphincter control.
Now that you know the characteristics of having suffered sexual abuse, we must consider that the presence of any of these symptoms does not necessarily imply that the person has sexual trauma. For this reason, the diagnosis must be made by a mental health professional since he will be in charge of evaluating the characteristics of the patient taking into account their particularities.
Types of sexual trauma
Sexual traumas have different components that differentiate them from each other. Therefore, here we will see the types of sexual trauma concerning their sequelae and consequences:
Sexual trauma linked to abuse
This type of sexual trauma leads to antisocial behaviors, as well as victim-blaming. In other words, this means that the abused person feels responsible for what happened. Likewise, in the case of children, there may be situations of school failure.
Sexual trauma linked to rape
The incidence of this kind of sexual trauma occurs at the level of affective and intimate relationships with other people. Because of this, someone raped or raped may be reluctant to close contact with her environment.
In some cases, this also implies the lack of memories linked to traumatic scenes resulting from the impact of the rape.
How to treat sexual trauma
Sexual traumas have consequences that can appear both in the body and in the person’s way of life. For this reason, it is transcendental to know the ways of treating sexual trauma that is available. In the following paragraphs, we will talk about this:
The therapy consists of a space for reflection that invites us to make changes in our personality concerning situations that generate stress, anguish, anxiety, and/or fear.
Both long-term and short-term therapies work on the emotions, thoughts, and behaviors that give rise to the characteristic symptoms of sexual trauma. This type of approach provides tools to overcome complex situations and improve quality of life.
In certain cases that present serious sequelae that endanger life, one of the alternatives for the treatment of sexual trauma lies in the use of psychoactive drugs that reduce the intensity of the symptoms.
This is because psychopharmaceuticals make modifications in the neuronal circuits associated with various emotions. However, the supply of this type of medication must be carried out under the clinical indication of a health professional.
If this post on how to overcome sexual trauma has been useful to you and you want to continue reading on the subject, we recommend you consult our articles on this website.
This article is merely informative, in BuzzBongo we do not have the power to make a diagnosis or recommend treatment. We invite you to go to a psychologist to treat your particular case.
- Echeburua, E., De Corral, P. (2006). Emotional sequelae in victims of childhood sexual abuse. Journals of Forensic Medicine, 23 (3), 75-82.
- Rodríguez López, Y., Aguiar Gigato, BA, García Álvarez, I. (2012). Psychological consequences of child sexual abuse. Eureka Magazine, 9 (1), 1-10.