Healing from abuse or physical trauma can be a long, harrowing journey for the survivor. The challenges to contend with include physical injuries, mental trauma, including PTSD, an incredibly common disorder among those who have been injured or abused, and the social stigma associated with coming out with a survivor story. Society has come a long way in recognizing the epidemic of abuse that occurs behind closed doors, but we still have work to do to develop a healing community that truly helps survivors overcome their abuse or injury.
On a personal level, there are several important steps to take to begin the healing process. They may not be easy, but they are crucial to achieving success and coming out the other end a stronger person. Injury or abuse, even extreme, does not have to mean a life of victimhood.
According to WB & T, one of the primary reasons victims of sexual abuse come forward publicly is to heal their wounds. In addition to the personal benefits, sharing your story publicly empowers other survivors to come forward with their own stories and to fight the social shame that comes with appearing “weak” or other nonsense used to stigmatize survivors.
Once we, as a society, embrace the open expression of grief, regret, anger, and all of the other emotions commonly experienced after trauma, we can begin to build the kind of world we all want, with a focus on empowering the disempowered and healing the wounds of the injured whether they are physical, mental, or emotional.
Seek Professional Help
Finding the courage to seek professional help is less of an issue with physical trauma than it is with mental trauma. As the BAP reminds us, mental health is still stigmatized today, and people often experience the unfair perception that there is something wrong with them if they seek the services of a licensed therapist or psychiatrist. There is enormous healing potential in a skilled trauma therapist in terms of overcoming the injury and using it as a foundation for building a stronger future.
Develop a Plan
Studies have shown that, across disciplines and projects, having a plan and sticking to it greatly increases the chances of success. With the help of a therapist, close friends, and family, develop a plan to overcome your physical or emotional trauma. This will inspire you and give you hope that recovery is within reach.
Experiencing trauma should never mean the end of pursuing a life of happiness. Many survivors go on to achieve great things and live full, happy lives. With tools like the ones above, you can heal from your past physical trauma and have a fulfilling life despite your bad experiences.