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Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

We often use the word survivor to talk about our experiences, why is that? What are some other ways of talking about sexual assault that support survivors?

 

I've always used the word 'survivor' because it focuses on the strengths of the person, rather than the negative thing that happened to them. We talk about our experiences so as others know that they are not alone, it is not their fault. It removes the stigma and the slut shaming that often accompanies being a survivor.


My entire life can be described in one sentence: It didn't go as planned and that's okay. ツ

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

@Rsg Thats pretty true in my experience people who go are victims of sex assault have to find a way to manage their way through it, some find the labels work for them, some dont, I think it is an individual thing that works best for you

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

I find this hard, but hear what you are saying. Sometimes I can do this, but sometimes the feelings and dreams are so real.  Even though this happened a long time ago, I find these thoughts intrude when I least want them. Dud try and file them away, but every now and then the bloody drawer is opened. 

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

I hear you, and it sounds really difficult. We do hear that a lot from many survivors. The important thing to know is the with these things you need to keep on doing breathing,  "Grounding" and self soothing things. And you need to do them for a looooong time until things subside. Don't give up! Smiley Happy So grounding means doing something to bring yourself back into the real world away from the thoughts that are troubling you. So you can do things like open your eyes (if you are in the dark, turn on the light) and look around the room. Do things like count 5 things you can see, 5 things you can hear, 5 things you can smell. And keep on doing this until the stress subsides. you can also do something like run your hands under cold or warm water, or use something you can feel like a crystal or even a phone cover and explore it with your fingers.

 

With the breathing it takes a while, but it will eventually help to self soothe you...there is an App called Smiling mind which is a mindfulness breathing excercise which i really like myself.

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

@Stingray1 Same here. It can be really hard to ignore or differentiate what's real and what's not. Having that self-control is important Smiley Happy 

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Stay excellent

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

I can relate @Stingray1 I often think of my trauma as a linen cupboard, because things are always being taken out and put back in, so when things are in order, I find that I don't have nightmares or flashbacks. However, when things are in shambles, it can be pretty hard to cope.

My entire life can be described in one sentence: It didn't go as planned and that's okay. ツ

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

@stonepixie I like the term survivor for the same reasons, it's a way of talking about the experience while still empowering the person who had to go through it.

 

I think something that is hugely important is talking about sexual assault in a way that supports survivors that a few of you have touched on already is to absolutely not victim blame. There is nothing a person could do that would mean that they would deserve to be assaulted so they should never be blamed for it. 

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

If we use the word victim instead of survivor, victim is a word that is a bit loaded as in someone who does not ever recover. We know that is not true, because humans are amazing beings who do recover!

 

Also I think it is best to be objective as you can about the experience (e.g. naming it for what it is as in sexual assault rather than other more scary words). 

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

Thank you I will keep trying.  Can I also take this opportunity to say thank you to Sexual Assault Resource Centre and to SEx Assault Squad for the help and support you all provide. 😊

Re: [SPECIAL GUEST] Supporting Survivors (trigger warning: sexual assault)

@Stingray1 I know and they tend to come back and surpirse you at times you least expect it, I wish I could give the right advice on how to get through it, all I can say is that after 35 years of policing and all the memories that come with that all I can say is that you have to find a way through it that works best for you. I try to get used to the dreams when they come, sometimes it helps Smiley Happy