A few days ago, I wrote about 7 different touching exercises couples can do together to help one or both heal from sexual trauma. Here are five important things a partner can do to help the sexual trauma victim heal.
- Get educated. Read articles and maybe even go to a sexual trauma expert to learn about how sexual trauma affects people.
- Encourage your partner to see a qualified therapist if he or she is not seeing one already.
- Be willing to listen. Create a safe place for your partner to express what he or she is discovering or needs to reveal. Feelings are the most important elements of the communication. Don’t try to fix or solve the problem. Just be emotionally present and show understanding. Do not push for your partner to reveal more than he or she is ready to.
- You may need therapy yourself to deal with your feelings about your partner as well as the perpetrator.
- When your partner is ready, do the touch exercises I discussed in my previous blog, preferably under a couple therapist’s supervision.
As a partner of a sexual trauma victim, you can be a key catalyst in the healing. Take care of yourself as you take care of your partner!