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  • Writer's pictureMary Laird

So...Now What?

After an assault, you have a fear of not being in control of yourself. It is very understandable considering you were taken advantage of and you had absolutely no control of what was happening to you. A very difficult part of healing is sitting with the knowledge of what happened to you,dealing with the flashbacks playing over and over again in your head, feeling powerless. Wondering if you will ever feel like everything hasn’t been taken from you and if it will ever stop feeling this way, or if this is just your life now. The biggest question for me that was constantly on my mind was “ What am I going to do with my life now?” or “How am I going to be able to come back from this?”. I knew that I had to find a way to get the control back into my life. I never wanted to be as vulnerable and powerless as I was that night. There is a stigma in today's society that views victims as being “weak” and “incapable”. There is actually research out there that proves that the stigma in today’s society only harms the victims further, as if they have not had enough damage done. Of course this stigma continues to make the victim feel as if they cannot come back from this and they cannot move on. You should not be ashamed or embarrassed about what happened to you. Yes it was terrible and I would never wish it upon anyone ever, but the shame and embarrassment is only what the assailant wants. They want you to feel that way so that you will not speak up about it, leading to them getting away with it and continuing with their terrible actions. Do not give them the satisfaction of thinking that they have beat you down and broken your confidence. I know at some times it is hard to get in that mindset but the truth is, you now have full control of your life. Do not let the trauma keep you from accomplishing the things that you want. They do not deserve that satisfaction, so don't let them have it. There will be hard days and there will be triggers, but you are fully in control of your life, so live it.

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