Healing After Traumatic Events
Persons who have endured devastating life events such as violence, assault, emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, rape, war, peacekeeping, witnessing violence, torture, disasters, and so forth, may experience after-effects, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), that interfere with their sense of safety, well-being, control over their lives, self-esteem, and interpersonal relationships.
Childhood sexual abuse and adult sexual assault may also result in sexual difficulties, and child abuse may lead to continued re-victimization in adulthood.
When people have survived traumatic events, they may find their views of themselves and/or of other people and the world have changed, and they may experience symptoms such as irritability, anger, depression, intrusive thoughts, images and sensations, fears and anxieties, and increased watchfulness.
They may also avoid activities, people, and places that they had enjoyed in the past, and may find that they are jumpier than usual. Other common symptoms include substance abuse and other addictions, as well as possible self-harming behaviors.
Persons who have endured chronic abuse may feel bad, worthless, guilty, ashamed, and responsible for the abuse.
Treatment may be of benefit to those who feel distressed by any of these signs and symptoms, or who find that their lives have been changed because of their overwhelming experiences.