Hinderances to Healing

There are a number of things that will serve as hinderances to healing for the Survivor. One of those things is the negative impact of people who have piled on the Survivor rather than helping them with their burden, either by wanting to offer a "quick fix" or to actually sweep the issue under the rug, they have "added insult to injury" by being less than supportive of the pain and trauma the Survivor has endured.

Another is the power of false or inaccurate beliefs, some of which may be held unconsciously. We call these false beliefs myths. If it is the truth that will set you free (John 8:32), then a myth will have the opposite effect... keeping you stuck by chains of false guilt and inaccurate information 

despite your best efforts to

move forward. 

 

The following posts are provided to help you re-examine what you might have been told or come to believe to be true. You might be surprised by what you discover. If you are not a Survivor, the following will hopefully shed light on ways Survivors have been impacted, and what you might do to begin to help them.

 

A Lack of Support & Protection

Sexual abuse is horrific, and the survivors need to feel as though people understand the impact, and need to feel protected and supported. This is one judge who "gets it." If only pastors learned to support Survivors like this judge, in terms of having their sympathies directed toward the victim, NOT the perpetrator. Can you imaging how healing this was for the parents and family to hear such intensity? This Judge has tapped into the Lord's heart when it comes to supporting and protecting Survivors.
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Unfinished Business

 
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Most people have heard the phrase "Time heals all wounds." Though it sounds correct, as that is what usually
happens with physical injuries,
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the reality is that, with those things that leave deep emotional wounds, when there has been an intense soul wound, such a phrase couldn't be further from the truth. Why?
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Simply because deep wounds need to be intentionally addressed, so that the Truth can do its work of bringing healing and actual closure to the emotional wound.
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Sadly, most Survivors have come to believe the myth about time and distance being all that is necessary for a deep and profound wound to heal. So, instead of doing the necessary work of processing the pain and coming to terms with the loss, they bury it alive, throwing a little dirt on top of it, believing that "the past is in the past."
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Unfortunately, they have mistaken wishful thinking for emotional processing. The pain gets pushed "out of sight, out of mind", or so they think. What actually happens is that the pain gets "buried alive," only to begin festering, and causing what amounts to an emotional infection, which will begin to force its way to the surface. 
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For too many Survivors, what unfortunately happens is they become unconsciously driven by their pain, by their "unfinished business," driven to try to salve a deep wound with things that can numb the pain, that can serve as a form of emotional anesthesia. The most common means of self-anesthetizing are: 
(1) Relationships (often intense & short-lived )
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(2) Activities (things that either increase adrenaline which distracts from the pain or numbs the pain)
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 (3) Substances (drugs, drink, & food).
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Though these things offer momentary relief, unfortunately, they often come with unanticipated or "unplanned" consequences, which serve to not only compound the problems, but leave the original pain untouched, unaddressed, and unfinished. Thus, instead of solving the original source of the pain, the attempts at momentary pain relief inevitably create new problems, thus compounding both the problems and the emotional pain.
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Unfortunately, for many Survivors, this has become the story of their lives, experiencing compounding issues, which end up also becoming buried alive, remaining unfinished, which
then become additional
emotional baggage that they continue to carry into their future, especially
into future relationships.
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Those Survivors who experience this, end up "adding insult to injury" for themselves, stuffing emotions, burying more things, and trying to simply "move on" with their lives. Little do they realize that all those compounding issues and emotions become a driving force, creating a significant degree of emotional reactivity, which:
(1) prevents them from making sound and wise decisions,
(2) blurs their ability to use good judgement (especially in terms of relationships and personal boundaries),
(3) prevents them from being fully emotionally present in any given situation (experienced as anxiety and a sense of restlessness),
(4) prevents them from experiencing inner peace and rest.      
  Unfortunately, many female Survivors end up in unhealthy relationships with irresponsible and selfish men, which often results in additional emotional injury and unplanned pregnancy. This only adds to their emotional pain, as there are no easy answers or pain-free solutions. For many women (approximately 40% of all women), they end up opting to have an abortion, believing it will solve "the problem," only to discover that it wasn't as simple or convenient as they were led to believe. For many reasons, they had allowed themselves to believe that it wasn't a baby, it was simply a fetus, a "product of conception." Little did they anticipate that a deep part of them knew, and would be deeply impacted by that "choice." 
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They thought they left the problem behind as they left the clinic. But, the truth is that an important part of them, both in terms of their emotions and their conscience, was now trying to bring truth to the surface, to get their attention, so that they could effectively go through the grief process.
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Instead, they did what they so often do with intense emotions:  cut them off, bury them alive, and move on, only to find the need of self-anesthetizing becoming all the more intense. Thus, a vicious cycle commenced. And, it will remain as such until they force themselves into the pain to deal with their unfinished business.  
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Misplaced Sympathies

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