Sexual Assault Shame Counselling & Therapy

Sexual Assault

Sexual assault or abuse in childhood often causes psychological and emotional difficulties as the victim grows up. A child who is abused by a parent, is likely to suffer from severe anxiety, low self-esteem, uncontrollable anger, depression and intimacy issues. However, sexual assault is not limited to children, and it can harm an adult emotionally too.

Immediately after sexual assault, a person may not immediately experience pain or fear. They may even experience moments of pleasure, which can cause a lot of confusion and inner turmoil. They may feel betrayed if the abuser is a relative or acquaintance, but at the same time, feel guilty for reporting the sexual assault and getting the abuser in trouble. Abusers often lie to their victims, or reward them, and threats can deepen the emotional trauma.

A victim of sexual assault will often have trouble coping with relationships that are growing close, or with people physically touching them. When starting a relationship, memories will start to occur and they will cause trouble with intimacy in the relationship. Some people who have experienced sexual assault will become promiscuous, which can cause even more guilt.

It is essential for sexual assault survivors to receive counselling from a professional psychologist who is experienced in sexual assault. A therapist will help the victim to work through emotions and help clarify his or her choices. Working through the emotions of anger, guilt and shame will help to facilitate emotional healing. EMDR has been proven a very effective treatment for post traumatic stress disorder in sexual assault victims.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who offers sexual assault counselling to address your emotional healing issues you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Shame Counselling & Therapy

There are a variety of approaches to address the issue of shame.  One of them is the Shame Resilience method is based on the research of Bren√© Brown, Ph.D. LMSW. 

Shame Resilience is the developed ability to practice authenticity when we experience shame, to move through the experience without sacrificing our values, and to come out on the other side of the shame experience with more courage, compassion, and connection than we had going into it.

Shame Resilience is about moving from shame to empathy- the real antidote to shame. Self-compassion is also critically important, because when we’re able to be tender with ourselves in the midst of shame we’re more likely to reach out, connect and experience empathy.

Other approaches, like Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems (CIMBS)  uses what is called a systems perspective that can address how an individual has learned to respond due to early trauma and or other developmental experiences.

Approaches to shame are not limited to the above.  There are many other therapies that address feeling.

If you do contact a therapist regarding shame issues please make sure that you ask them about their training in this area and choose a therapist whose approach makes sense to you.

 

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Nazanin Moghadami

M.Couns., RCC
Hello and welcome. I am a Registered Clinical Counsellor and I have been working within the mental health field in Vancouver for over 7 years in various capacities. In my work, I draw upon my professional and personal... Read more

Letty Mills

M.A., RCC
I have been practicing as a counsellor for over 25 years. I hold a Master’s Degree in Counselling Psychology from the University of British Columbia, and I am registered with the B.C. Association of Clinical... Read more