Common feelings associated with rape
Did you know rape is the most second horrific thing that can happen to a person other than murder? You and your loved ones will most likely go through the same emotions as grieving the loss of a loved one. They are shock and disbelief, anger, bargaining, depression and then acceptance. All of these emotions might not be felt or in the order listed above, but the majority of them are. Not only do most experience these emotions, but the victim also has the initial “shock” or “numbness” to get through, which typically comes first before other emotions. Other common feelings that might occur right after the rape are shame, scared, guilty, dirty and powerless. All of these are understandable to have but doesn’t mean they are warranted. A lot of survivors feel shame, guilt and dirty but it doesn’t mean they are. What it means is you are taking on the assaulter’s dirty shameful guilt because that is what he is trying to do to you through rape and control. DON’T LET HIM! Survivors also deal with the fear of rejection through friends and family. This sometimes means there is a communication problem because the friends or family just don’t know how to handle it or what to say. Refer to my page “Advice for loved ones of survivors”. They may also have problems with their sleep or eating patterns. Most survivors encounter many of these feelings and it is all part of the healing process. I like to say, “You need to feel in order to heal”. You can not mask the pain with drugs and alcohol because the less you feel the longer it takes to heal. The more you keep it inside the bigger the issue will get and come out when you least expect it. And depending on how long you keep your feelings regressed the bigger it’s ugly head is when it does surface. I always say if you feel like crying, no matter where you are or how long ago it was, let it out. Eventually, you may even want to talk about it. If you can’t talk about it, write it down. The more you let your feelings out, the more room you have to heal. The most important reason for this is because THE ASSUALTER DOESN’T DESERVE TO CONTROL YOUR LIFE ANYMORE! As long as you are regressing, the longer they have control over your life.