This episode takes a deep dive into healing the shame of childhood sexual abuse.
National expert Beverly Engel is Melanie’s guest as the two of them explore some of the many unhealthy consequences of shame. An acclaimed advocate for victims of sexual, physical, and emotional abuse, Beverly’s a psychologist and best-selling author who’s published 22 books, including four bestsellers on emotional abuse.
Her most recent book is Freedom at Last: Healing the Shame of Childhood Sexual Abuse.
Even though the subject matter may feel dark and heavy, the reality is that millions of people, both men and women, suffer deeply from the shame of having been sexually abused as children.
And that shame can become an insidious self-saboteur, holding you hostage, never allowing you to live a full, rich life.
There are many, often hidden, negative health consequences of having experienced childhood sexual abuse (CSA). As Beverly writes:
“CSA survivors have a significantly higher risk of medical, psychological, behavioral, interpersonal, and social difficulties. Systemic reviews have also specifically established that CSA is a risk factor for depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), dissociative patterns, sexual problems, relationship problems, sexual exploitation, intimate partner violence, suicidality, substance abuse, eating disorders, and educational difficulties. But all those effects and risk factors pale in comparison to one particular consequence of child sexual abuse—shame.”
The very good news is that there is so much hope and healing possible, which is what the focus of the show is really all about.
Bad things happen to very good people. When you understand how much can be done to heal the shame of those early childhood wounds, your life will change for the better, in ways you may not even be able to imagine at this point.
As Beverly wrote in Freedom at Last, “being reminded of your own abuse is not necessarily a negative thing. This is because many former victims are in so much denial that being reminded of what happened to them can help them get out of denial, a major problem for many former victims. The more you can face the truth about what happened to you, the healthier you can become.”
This episode takes a fearless look at the truth about what happened, and offers lots of ideas, suggestions, and evidence-based strategies to help folks begin the transformational journey of healing themselves into wholeness.
Finally, please don’t expect this to be a horrible downer of a show. These two women offer wide-open, heartfelt personal experiences and professional guidance into a taboo subject that must be openly talked about. For that is where the healing lives.
You don’t have to suffer alone anymore. If you’re struggling with the shame of childhood sexual abuse, CPTSD, or any other traumatic experience, please reach out to Melanie for a free 15-minute phone consult: firstname.lastname@example.org.