Your friends know a lot about you: where you grew up, where you went to school, what you like to eat, your favorite music, and the kinds of jokes that can make you laugh so hard the tears arrive.
But there’s a part of you that they don’t know. You try not to think about it, but it’s never far from your thoughts. It colors the way you react to so many things, and you don’t always realize that. It’s easier not to tell other people about it. The few times you’ve tried, they either didn’t believe you or offered advice that added to the hurt and shame that surrounds you. “Just forget about it.” “Let the past go and move on.” “It’s ancient history.” “You just need to forgive and it will be better.”
Adults who have been abused as children suffer from that abuse long after the actual act. The nature of the abuse may have been different, and each person is unique, but we’ve counseled enough adult victims of childhood abuse to recognize some common threads. There’s nearly always a significant amount of shame and embarrassment, as if you were somehow truly at fault for what an adult did to you. Usually, there’s some degree of guilt, too. You do your best to suppress the memories, but they surface when you least expect it in ways you just can’t understand. You’ve had nights where you lay awake, praying that the pain will go away, but it’s there the next morning.
The abuse could have been physical, it could have been emotional, it could have been sexual, or some combination of all those. Regardless, it involved someone in power behaving badly with you and leaving you to deal with the aftermath. You love your family and friends, but you just can’t bring yourself to trust them fully. Innocent comments and actions trigger fresh pain in the scars nobody can see.
We have good news for you. People can heal. You can heal. We can’t erase the abuse from your past, but we can help you learn how to keep it from controlling your daily life. We’ll help you take control over your memories and give you ways to cope when someone or something triggers those deep feelings. Most of all, we’ll show you why there’s absolutely no need to feel ashamed or guilty about what happened to you.
No, the process isn’t easy. It’s a difficult journey, but you’ll have someone walking along with you, helping you take each step and reminding you of the positive progress you’ve made. You’ll free the child inside you and learn to love yourself as God intended. Are you ready to start? Call us today.