You were 14 years old and have been raped by an older boy in the neighborhood and your feel very ashamed, humiliated and embarrassed that it happened to you. You were hanging outside at friend’s house with a bunch of your friends, down the road from your house. As you were walking back home that night an older boy jumps out from behind a tree and scares the daylights out of you. He starts talking with you as he is walking closer to you and convinces you to sit down with him on the grass near a few bushes. You do know who he is, he was hanging out with you earlier at your friend’s house, and only being 14 years old you think nothing of it.
The next thing you know he is sitting closer to you and starts putting his hands all over you, and then proceeds to rape you. You walk on home that night after the incident and go into your house, don’t make any eye contact with your parents and say don’t say anything to anyone about what has just happened. You don’t even tell your best friend. That night you lie in bed crying and feeling confused about what really happened that night, questioning yourself if what he did was called “rape”. You ask yourself “Why did I not fight him off?”, “Why did I not say anything to him, like holler or scream at that time?” You were so shocked, stunned that something like that could happen to you, especially from someone you knew.
The next day you go to school feeling ashamed and guilty, especially when you see him in the hallway. You don’t say anything to anyone, because you think they will not believe you and say that you must have done something to encourage what happened to you. From that incident on, you live in fear that it will happen again with him or someone else.
Deep down you feel you are a bad person, that you are dirty, unclean, and you did something bad to bring on the incident. As time goes on, you start to have poor self-confidence and become depressed, holding on to this secret of being raped. You find yourself very easily getting angry and throwing things with such rage.
In a case like this, you needed the homeopathic remedy Staphysagria 6c to help address the shock and anger of what happened that night. Your poor self-confidence is now turning into a rage inside you. Staphysagria will help you diffuse the anger that you had then and may still have now 10+ years later from you suppressing your emotions since that night. Staphysagria has a problem trusting others, especially men, because you think all they want to do is take advantage of you since you are a very nice person and easily taken advantage of. You did not fight off that boy then, what makes you think you will be able to defend yourself again? Staphysagria feels defenseless and fear you will not be able to stand up to someone if an attack happens again. You may have developed chronic vaginitis, cystitis, Crohn’s disease or a female health condition from suppressing your emotions ever since that rape incident.
Your Rape Incident May Be Affecting Your Relationship Now
You started dating someone new and all is going well. You both have a lot in common like skiing, hiking, bowling and both love animals. After a month or so of dating, you find yourself falling in love with him. He is hugging and kissing you and at certain point you start to freaking out inside. As he starts touching you, all the suppressed emotions start to come out. You are overwhelmed, and in your mind, you are saying “no”.
You have not been in a close relationship in the last 5 years, since you were raped. Getting closer in this relationship brings up the rape incident that you have suppressed for the 5 years by shutting down your feelings of getting close to someone. The next few weeks you continue to relive the rape incident in your head. You are having a hard time letting go, and now it is affecting this new relationship. You are embarrassed and feel shame about the incident that happened with that guy in your old neighborhood. It’s been 5 years and you never told anyone about the incident. Where you are having a hard time letting go of the rape incident reliving the incident in your head, homeopathic remedy Natrum Muriaticum 6c taken daily, is what you need to help you let the incident go and move forward in this new relationship.
What is the Definition of Sexual Abuse?
Sexual abuse is when someone, whether it be a child, adult (female or male) is forced or tricked into sexual activities without consent, and includes rape, sexual child abuse, incest, fondling, attempted rape, date-rape (with or without drugs or alcohol), human trafficking, sexual harassment, or any other type of unwanted sexual contact. When a child is sexually abused, they may not understand that what’s happening is abuse, or that it’s wrong and they may be afraid to tell someone.
Sexual violence is about power and control where the abuser feels they have, which is not related to having sex or love. Sexual abuse can happen anywhere to people of all ages, races, gender, sexual identity, religion and economic classes. In most cases, it is someone you know such as a family member or someone known in the community (i.e., neighbor, teacher, boy scouts, in the church), and it can happen in person or online.
According to the National Institute of Health, 1 in 3 females and 1 in 4 men experience sexual violence in their life time in America. More than likely these numbers are underestimated due to shame, fear or feelings of isolation that prevents many survivors from reporting the abuse.
In most cases, the survivor does not report the abuse for several reasons such as:
- Confused about what really happened
- Denial that the sexual incident did happen
- Fears there will be repercussions for them or for their family from the abuser
- Feeling ashamed, humiliated, or a feeling of helplessness that the incident happened
- Blaming themselves for the sexual incident
There are 2 Types of Sexual Abuse
- Contact abuse is where an abuser makes physical contact with you. This includes:
- Sexual touching of any part of the body, whether you’re clothed or not
- The abuser forcing themselves on or has you take part in sexual activities
- The actual act of rape
- Non-contact abuse is where you are abused without being touched by the abuser. This can be in person or online.
- Exposing or flashing
- Showing pornography
- Exposing a child to sexual acts
- Forcing you to take part in sexual activities or conversations online or through a smartphone.
What are the Signs of Sexual Abuse?
A 9-year-old girl is being sexually molested by her older brother. Every time her parents go out on Friday or Saturday nights she cringes, not knowing if her brother is going to approach her. The young girl idealizes her brother, too. He’s a great athlete, a football and baseball player. Which brings out a love and hate situation with her brother.
The young girl starts to have stomach aches when her parents go out, brought on by the stress of what may happen with her brother. She has not told anyone about any of this for fear her brother will get in trouble.
The homeopathic remedy Ignatia Amara 6c taken daily will help with the young girl’s stomach ache, cramping pains she has from the stress she feels. Ignatia Amara has what’s called a “love hate situation”. She loves her brother (idealizes him) and yet she doesn’t like what her brother does to her sometimes when her parents go out on the weekend.
Sexual abuse can cause traumatic symptoms of post-traumatic-stress-disorder (PTSD), which can cause emotional and behavioral signs.
- Anxiety about specific situations that didn’t previously prompt anxiety
- Avoiding being with specific people or places alone
- Changes in their mood, feeling irritable, and angry, or persistent sadness or depression
- Low self-esteem
- Language or sexual behavior you wouldn’t expect them to know as a child
- Disturbed sleep, nightmares, or bedwetting
- Self-harming behavior
- Alcohol or drug use
- Suicidal thoughts
- New sexually transmitted infections
Sexual Abuse can Cause Health Problems
Every Saturday night, a 3-year-old little girl lines up everyone’s shoes all around her bed. So, when her father comes home drunk, he does not come in her bedroom and in appropriately touch her. She lies in bed at night waiting to see if her father comes into her bedroom. As soon as she hears her father come into her bedroom, she starts throwing the shoes, one by one at his head, in hopes it would deter him from inappropriately touching her. Some nights the shoe throwing would work and other nights it would not. This behavior from her father would continue on and off until she turned 16 years-old, when she quit school and left home to live with one of her older sisters, and got a job at a super market.
Having to endure this kind of behavior from her father has left the girl with low self-confidence, guilty feelings, and blaming herself for allowing the incident to continue to go on. She developed chronic urinary tract infections (UTI’s) in her 20’s that would commonly happen after intercourse with her husband. The grief and humiliation over what happened to her as a little girl is what is causing her to have the chronic UTI’s. The homeopathic remedy Staphysagria is what she needs to address the grief and humiliation and that she blames herself for what happened since she was 3- years-old and now having UTI’s after intercourse (even though she loves her husband) which commonly happens after intercourse. Staphysagria 6c taken daily will help her get over the inappropriate touching that her father did to her at the age of 3-years-old.
Sexual abuse can cause health problems soon after the attack or years down the road. When taking someone’s health history to select a homeopathic remedy, there are 2 questions that are always asked when someone states they have a particular symptom or health condition, along with the symptoms they are experiencing.
- When did your symptom(s) or health condition(s) start?
- What was going on in your life 1-12 months prior to you developing these symptoms or health conditions?
When someone states that they have been sexually abused prior to them developing symptoms, the homeopath checks to see if there is any connection with the person being “never well since the sexual incident”. In cases like this, a homeopathic remedy will be selected according to the symptoms being exhibited, and when the homeopathic remedy stops working or when well-chosen remedies do not work, a homeopathic rape remedy will be selected to address the etiology “never well since the sexual incident” according to what happened and how that person feels about the incident.
Health Conditions that can Commonly Develop from Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse can affect your health, career and relationships. The health conditions develop from the suppressed emotions of the sexual abuse.
- Cystitis and Bladder Infections, especially worse after sex. The whole pelvic area and urethra become sensitive, congested and irritated from sex.
- Colon Problems (i.e., ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s Disease) from the suppressed anger they feel inside, causing the colon have spasms, colic, diarrhea, and constipation.
- Vaginal cysts, fibroids, ovarian cysts, tumors, or menstrual cramps from the suppressed emotions.
- Not Sexually Active from not being able to have sex anymore due to the bad experiences with sex, to feeling guilty, sexually abused or humiliated.
Leaving a Sexually Abusive Relationship
You are married to the love of your life going on 5 years now. Your partner starts drinking more on the weekends to help him cope with the stress he has at work (they are short staffed). He’s starting to argue with you more, and at times it can lead to him getting more physically abusive with you, which can now go from a physically abusive relationship to a sexually abusive relationship.
What do you do? Do you leave him with your 2 children, a 3-year-old and 1 year old? You blame yourself for not getting a job to help pick up the slack of the financial stress you and your husband feel, and there’s the additional stress on him working at a job he hates. He always apologizes later on for how he treated you, only it happens again the following weekend when he starts drinking again. You love your husband and at the same time you don’t like the abusive relationship. You start eating food to comfort your feelings, foods like ice cream, candy and fast food. You have no place to go if you did leave him, especially with 2 small children. How would you be able to support you and the children, when you can’t even do it with your husband. You would rather stay in an abusive relationship than be out on your own, all alone, providing for yourself and the children. Sometimes you think “if I stay in the relationship, maybe he will change”. Then there are times you may be afraid if your husband did find out you are thinking of leaving him, he would get very mad and become even more abusive towards you.
When some women think staying in an abusive relationship, where you are being physically, verbally and sexually abused is better than being alone out there in the big world, they need the homeopathic remedy Pulsatilla. Those that need Pulsatilla feel sad and lonely, even when married, and would rather stay in an abusive relationship than be out on their own, all alone. Sometimes the women will start looking for love elsewhere, and will not have the nerve to leave the abusive relationship until they have found someone else’s arms to be in.
When you are feeling sad, lonely and abandoned and you start eating for comfort, you may start gaining weight, and no matter how much you cut back on your calories and exercise, you just can’t lose weight. Yes, the weight gain probably started from eating for comfort, however putting weight on and not being able to lose weight with a decrease in calories shows the weight you put on is probably emotional weight for protection from the sexual abuse. On some level, whether it is consciously or unconsciously, you feel by putting the weight on will make you unattractive and no one will be attracted to you and sexually abuse you again.
Taking Pulsatilla 6c daily will help you not feel sad, alone and abandoned and will help you to have the strength to decide whether or not you need to leave the husband and go out on your own and with the children. Sometimes after taking Pulsatilla, making up your mind to leave your husband, you know you don’t have the confidence to actually go out on your own.
You sincerely and deeply love your children, and you feel it is best stay in the abusive relationship, for the children’s sake. You have no career of your own. Then one morning you wake up and say to yourself, “that is it, I have had enough of this abuse”. Maybe you blame yourself for the abuse or you feel weak and embarrassed that you stayed in spite of it, feeling trapped by confusion, guilt and self-blame.
Confidence to Leave
You think to yourself, how am I going to do this on my own with 2 children? It may take you a few months to get help with child care and get a job. You fear that you will fail in going out on your own and not being able to make it, and may have to go back to your husband. This feeling causes you to lack the confidence to make the move.
You take the homeopathic remedy Lycopodium 6c daily to help give you the confidence that need to go out on your own with the children. The Lycopodium will help give you the confidence you need to decide to move on your own, and will help you in taking steps to start to move forward by setting money aside and planning where you will stay (such as with a family member for a few months).
Your situation may be where your partner beats you down when he is drunk. You may have threatened him that you will leave him. He laughs and says “go ahead, leave me. Who is going to want someone like you with 2 kids?” Because he’s verbally and physically abusive (hitting you and sexually abusing you), he has you believing no one will want to someone like you. By him humiliating you and beating you down, you lack the confidence to leave the relationship. This is another classic case where the homeopathic remedy Lycopodium 6c taken daily will give you the confidence for you to decide to take children and leave the relationship. You will find yourself figuring out a way to leave whether it be staying with a family member or going to a women’s shelter.
What Else Can You do to Support a Survivor of Sexual Abuse?
- Simply listen
- Believe your loved one
- Validate their emotions
- Ask questions
- Avoid casting judgment
- Help them explore options and resources (i.e., seeking medical attention, reporting the crime, calling an abuse hotline, or seeking therapy