Understanding How Sexual Abuse Impacts Mental Health

sexual abuse and mental health

Sexual abuse is a very serious matter and sexual abuse impacts mental health. The victims of it often go on to experience severe mental health issues.

If you have been subject to sexual abuse then you need to do everything you can to try and work on and improve your mental health, preventing it from getting out of control. If it is already out of hand or if you have a loved one whose mental health is becoming troublesome for them, take immediate action.

This post tackles how sexual abuse impacts mental health, what you should do and how you can do it:

Sexual Abuse Impacts Mental Health

Recovery Centers

One of the best places you can go if you have been sexually abused (or you can send a loved one) is a recovery center. A recovery center is a place where people who’ve been abused sexually can go to get counseling, and therapy, and work through their issues.

These centers are not usually free, meaning you have to conduct extensive online research to find the best one in your area. It’s important to do this so that you can get more for your money.

A good way to determine whether a recovery center is right for you or not is to read its reviews. A company’s reviews can tell you a lot about it and can make the process of deciding if you want to go there a much easier decision for you to make. Try to read independent reviews, not ones posted on the clinic’s own site.

Something else to think about if you are going to go to a recovery center is funding. As noted in the previous paragraph, recovery centers are not cheap. Sometimes they can cost thousands of dollars for a single month of treatment. If you have a low income or reduced budget, you need to consider financing.

Financing is a way for people to pay for treatment without having to pay out of their own pockets. You will need a good credit score in order to be eligible for funding. Check your credit score before applying for anything like this, if you do not have good credit, you are not going to be eligible, and your score is going to drop even more after the hard search is performed.

Hard searches can take up to a year to be removed from your credit score, preventing you from receiving loans, credit cards, or finance in the interim between them being added and them being wiped.

Legal Action

Something else that needs to be noted is that if an individual is sexually assaulted, under no circumstances should they ever avoid reporting the guilty person.

A person responsible for sexual assault needs to be punished. Such people are dangerous to wider society and need to be arrested, prosecuted, and jailed. If you or a loved one has been sexually assaulted, do not protect your attacker. There are specialist agencies you can get in touch with that can help you. You can also go to the police.

Many people are reluctant to go to the police after somebody that they know sexually assaults them because they are worried about the consequences that this might have on their lives. If you live with your abuser or they are somebody close to you, it might feel like reporting them could destroy your life.

However, anybody who does not want to have a relationship with you because you have reported a sexual abuser is not the kind of person you want in your life anyway. Do not protect criminals, report them to the police or a relevant organization or agency.

impact on mental health

Avoiding Triggers

For people who have been sexually assaulted, there are usually triggers. Triggers can remind people of their assault and bring back unwanted memories. You, therefore, need to do everything you can to avoid triggering your loved one or bringing up anything that could remind them of their assault, unless they bring it up themselves and want to talk to you about it.

Make sure that you ask your loved one what their triggers are so that you do not unintentionally bring up something that could set back their recovery or make them feel like they do not want to talk to you anymore.

Something else to note is that if you are the one who has been sexually assaulted, you need to discuss your triggers with your loved ones so that they know what not to talk about in your presence.

Make sure that you are very specific and precise about your triggers, so there is not any ambiguity. If your triggers are ambiguous, loved ones are not going to be sure what they are and as a consequence might accidentally bring them up, triggering you and making you feel like they are trying to upset you or they have not listened to you.

Consider Therapy

The next thing that you need to think about is therapy. If you have been the victim of a sexual assault but you do not have the money to put yourself into a recovery center, then you might instead want to go and see a therapist.

A therapist will be able to talk you through your issues and help you to understand what is actually going on internally. Often, people who have been the victim of sexual assaults are not able to verbalize their emotions and feelings. If you are one such individual, then a therapist will be able to help you understand what is going on inside your head.

Finding a good therapist can be a very difficult thing to do. If you are not sure what makes a therapist good, always read their reviews. Reviews give you an opportunity to look into the minds of people who have previously worked with the therapist that you are considering working with.

If they have left negative reviews, then this is a strong indication that the therapist is not worth working with. Again, make sure that you read reviews that have been posted on independent sites and not on the therapist’s website.

Sexual assault is something that can negatively impact a person’s life. If you have been the victim of it or if a loved one of yours has, make sure to consider the things mentioned here. The things listed in this post will help them or you to work through your problems.