The way that I’ve always had seem to recall, during the holiday season, there are just only two avenues around this time of year that a sexual abuse survivor might consider.
1.) proceed to all your holiday functions unconsciously prepared as a guest, (because no one has seen your darling face for a while anyways).
2.) steer far away from unnecessary triggers by following these 5 Holiday-Wellness Tips for a Sexual Abuse Survivor!
As a sexual abuse survivor, you will need to empower yourself and initiate a plan of action before the holiday seasons. Don’t just show up like, “I’m here, let’s get this over with”! Instead, develop a plan for your visits making it easy for you to mingle! One successful method for developing a plan is your intention and focus to your feelings.
Meditation is a good source to ground intension. It refers to a family of self-regulation practices that focus on training attention and awareness in order to bring mental processes under greater voluntary control and thereby foster general mental well-being and development and/or specific capacities such as calm, clarity, and concentration (Roger Walsh & Shauna L. Shapiro 2006).”
II Get Support
The second Holiday-Wellness Tip for a sexual abuse survivors is surprisingly one that is the most forgotten about. At your major or minor holiday event with relatives or friends, ensure to establish support before you attend! Trust a holiday attendee that you can speak to directly about your level of comfort in regards to the specialized holiday event. It could be your spouse, close relative, or friend that you can confide in. Use this time to stay real and possibly even brutally honest about how you feel. As a sexual abuse survivor, a long explanation is unnecessary, furthermore, it isn't owed to anyone. So keep your mission short and precise. What’s more important here is to receive support just in case the exit door becomes your safe haven during the holiday season.
Oh boy, there are a lot of delicate topics to go around for more than two lifetimes, but for this holiday season, do yourself a favor and take this opportunity for the perfect time to completely “zone out”. For the present concerns of today, sensitive topics like the “Me too” movement or the never-ending sight of the zillion sex scandals should be avoided as a sexual abuse survivor at this time.
All-in-all, these subjects can easily lead to unavoidable triggers. Besides, the mere fact that a stranger’s sexual abuse case is easily discussed out in the open during the holidays while in the midst of a niece, cousin, or uncle who’s been potentially sexually victimized, seems like a crude farce to say the least. Do not engage in sensitive topics!
Stay positive and steer clear away from those subjects; Use this time to think about what you’re eating. Slow down the chewing process of your food, increase your awareness to what herbs or special seasoning that was used during the cook time, and finally direct your attention to the food being properly assimilated into your digestive system. As a sexual abuse survivor, always focus on shifting your awareness from sensitive topics to a form of enlightenment because the holiday season is for cheer and a year of closure.
After all, the reason why we come together for the holidays is to celebrate our lives as one. This may be difficult as a sexual abuse survivor while in the presence of unhappy people. Nevertheless, remind yourself why you have chosen to be present amongst them during this time. A good point of reference to remember is the guidance of your inner-self.
Your inner-self is the strong-willed force that is backed up by your encouragement to restore balance, starting first with gratitude. We refer to this high gratitude as a form of self-talk, and also referred to as intrapersonal communication. Our ability to talk to ourselves and think in words is a major part of the human experience of consciousness. You may want to imprint this natural occurrence with gratitude for the holidays, focusing on life and your individual personal growth.
Never hold your breath, but always remember to breathe through all circumstances during the holiday traditions. Sometimes as a sexual abuse survivor, you may need a break from visiting with family and friends and this is okay. Make an excuse to use the restroom or just step away. Go outside and breathe in slowly through the nose and out through the mouth. Take this moment to give thanks for your ability to do so. No matter the excuse, listen to your body if you are experiencing a sensation of overwhelming feelings or an uncomfortable anxiousness. Always remember that slow and deep breathing is a sure way to alleviate stressors and converge to a homeostasis state. You don’t have to talk the night away at holiday visits but you want to always remain in charge of your organic breath as a sexual abuse survivor.
Reality in Consciousness begins at the very moment as the work is placed forth by your intent to grow and change for the betterment of self, aiding in the improvement of mankind!
"The meeting of meditative disciplines and western psychology: A mutually enriching dialogue"
(Roger Walsh & Shauna L. Shapiro 2006).
Shaw Nee Janelle