As a sexual assault survivor, I find all the recent allegations of sexual assault in the news really upsetting and triggering. What can I do to survive them?

Q:

As a sexual assault survivor, I find all the recent allegations of sexual assault in the news really upsetting and triggering. What can do to survive them?

A:

The last few years have been really hard, especially if you are a survivor or someone who falls under the marginalized identity structure. And goodness forbid you fall underneath both of these categories.

As a survivor, constantly seeing people against you and or not believing other people who share similar stories can be and probably has been really hard to stomach. Unfortunately, the trauma is being broadcast across all forms of social media and news outlets daily. It can be really hard to get away from it.

So, it's important to reduce your exposure. Opting to only use your phone for certain hours of the day can be helpful as well as restricting which apps you use. Constantly looking at all of that information can actually be retraumatizing, so it may be best to limit how much you allow yourself to see and hear.

Using your people is also really helpful. When I say "your people," I mean spending time with friends, family and people you feel support you. Also, if you have a therapist make sure to check in with them and let them know how you are feeling. Overall, be honest about the things you are struggling with so that everyone can support you as best they can.

Upping your self care and listening to your body can also be extremely helpful when you're dealing with triggering content in the media. Listen to your body when it tells you it's had enough, when it tells you to rest. As for self-care, that's typically really individual, but be sure to make time for it and do what works for you. That might include going for a walk, going to the movies, going to a comedy show, starting a new hobby, reading, coloring, going to the gym, eating one of your favorite foods, taking a nap, dancing, meditating or doing yoga.

The outside world can be really tough on survivors. Take care of yourself and keep that cup full. You are allowed to take breaks and take care of yourself.

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Written by Jimanekia Eborn
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Jimanekia Eborn has worked in mental health for the last 10 years, which is where she saw the need for sexual education and sexual trauma support. This has led to her passion for assisting and supporting those that are sexual assault survivors and those without access to comprehensive sex education. Her compassion and passion for these populations has pushed her to continue building safe spaces for clientele, sharing education, and supporting their mental spaces.

 

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