In order to move forward, Dr. Fradkin says a sexual abuse survivor must first learn to speak his truth. The second step is to find a support group, whether in person or through a virtual chat room. "Finding other survivors who have had the same experience you have is very important," Dr. Fradkin says. "When we speak the truth to somebody else, that's when the shame begins to heal."
But, for some, speaking the truth isn't enough. "It's really important to get more help so that you have some tools," Dr. Fradkin says. "There are lots of tools that therapists can offer you. ... It's important to learn skills about how to manage those terrible, awful flashbacks that survivors have."
Meditation and hypnosis are just some of the therapies available to survivors. "The idea is to go back there and rescue that boy and bring him to a safe place so that the man and the boy get to have one life together," Dr. Fradkin says. "And that's possible."
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