Note: This post is more detailed than most about abuse and rape.
There are many hard parts about being a survivor of sexual assault. Often we want to overlook the hardest parts because they are so painful or bring shame. It is only when we finally start to talk about and acknowledge what actually happened and work through it that we get better.
One shameful piece of being a sexual assault survivor is what we felt when it happened. I have written about this a couple times before, but I think it deserves repeating. There is much shame in how we felt when we were abused or raped.
The very definition of abuse is when something God created is used outside its intended purpose.
The shame we feel about what happened to us is harder because it was not something we could control. Stay with me as I get detailed so you understand you are not alone.
Our bodies were made to be intimate as husband and wife. To have sex. There is nothing wrong about that. God created it for a man and woman inside the confines of marriage. (I understand if you have a hard time with this as I do too since I’ve never been married.)
However, our bodies are made to react when things happen to them. So any touches to our bodies that are around areas God created to react sexually will react no matter who is touching them. It is how God created us.
So, when we are sexually abused or raped our bodies will react, and though yes it may have been terrifying and painful, our bodies may react feeling an orgasm. No, it is not a pleasurable experience and that is what is confusing when our bodies react, and that is what’s happening. Our bodies react the way they were created. How can something bad feel good? That is where we feel shame.
Here are some of the thoughts I’ve had about my experiences: I should have never felt that with them! How horrible! I’m a horrible person for feeling that when they raped me! I should not have felt anything good from being abused!
A lot of shame is what comes up. It is the silent shame we carry and don’t want to talk about because what will people think if they know we felt pleasure or an orgasm while being sexually abused or raped? It keeps us silent, but I have found it is in bringing it to light that the shame begins to disappear.
Today as I was processing through another trauma I did not like what I had felt when it happened. I couldn’t look at my therapist when I said the word orgasm. The word itself brings shame on us though it shouldn’t. He assured me he has no judgments about it and that my perpetrators used what God meant for good in a bad way.
It’s hard to understand so I’ve asked Jesus to walk with me as I navigate through these feelings. I do not like when they come up and I would like to wish them away. However, it is part of working though what happened toward healing. When we make the silent shame no longer silent that healing truly begins.
I pray you can begin to open up about the shame that is felt, and realize there is no reason to be ashamed. Another honest step toward healing today.
© 2019 Susan M. Clabaugh. All Rights Reserved.