Hope For Healing. Org


Healing News originally posted January 1997

Copyright 1997-2012
As we each begin our way in this new year let us not forget that we
each deserve the right to heal. We have the right to be unafraid to be
alone or in unusual settings. We have the right to know who we are and
to better understand ourselves in the process. 

This newsletter is written by and for survivors.
As we learn how to truly enjoy our lives once again.
May we all have a more peace filled new year.

 Flashbacks: a natural process of healing
     By Emily Shadowdove

Terrifying, unbearable, scary, uncontrollable, confusing....these and
many more words are what a survivor uses to describe how a flashback
 Flashbacks are one of the most frightening and confusing ordeals a
survivor faces after a sexual assault. And though they are
frightening and feel out of control they are a healthy sign that we 
are ready to heal.

Our minds are wonderful devices, they protect us from extreme pain
and suffering, sometimes by blocking out traumatic events in our 
lives, but when and only when our minds know that we are ready to cope
with the memories and feelings does it bring them to our attention.
Many times this happens in the form of a flashback, or in a more 
gentle and manageable term, an involuntary reflection.

Not knowing why a flashback happens makes dealing with them
confusing for survivors.
Emotionally loaded, flashbacks bring back feelings from the original
attack. Thoughts, actions and emotions that a survivor kept repressed
during their attack may be to blame for some of these vivid memories.

The very fact that flashbacks seem to be uncontrollable and 
unpredictable, makes stopping flashback memories seemingly just 

another pain to bear.
When we begin to understand why we have flashbacks and are not
paralyzed  by them, we can move further along the path to healing.
Flashbacks are a natural process of healing and they are safe.
Your mind is now telling you that it is no longer necessary to block 
such memories.

Failing Trust or failing ourselves
by Michelle Pachman

What is in us about not having trust? It might be about making up our minds. The commitment we want to make is the decision to trust. Keeping the uncertainty of trust as a reason that stalls a way to heal. If trust is implemented, there are no assurances that someone or even ones self with whom you gave your trust to, will return with something positive. The only assurance that you have, is that you yourself made a positive decision.

Trusting is an important issue with survivors. With survivors (not exclusively but this is whom I am speaking of) trust becomes a very large issue in every day life. For many distrust grows so large it can't be seen because it encompasses everything. The issue of trust comes into play for us everyday though we may be so used to not trusting, we are no longer aware of this pain.

When we see an opportunity to trust but know the decision to do so is not so immediate we roll it around in our minds playing out scenarios of the "whys" and "what ifs" but as it comes close to us and maybe even that our trust is being demanded of us, it clutches at our fears and pulls at all we have learned in our lives as survivors. We have learned not to give in and trust.

There is no gray area in trust, it is basically black and white, success or fail. The failing of trust is not if someone or something lets you down or betrays your trust somehow but the failing is not to trust at all. Everyone needs to learn that trusting is not in the subject but in the action. Success is when we decide to trust.

What was once taken from us can now be returned under our own power. We have the power to trust, we must decide to use this power within ourselves. Choosing to trust is very much a frightening issue. Rushing to trust may not be the answer but to approach it slowly with small decision to think about it and making sure you think about it in an affirming light as well as facing the fact that there is no sure science in trusting.

Deciding to trust in something is right if it will be something that will help us or be good for oneself. Trusting our instincts even though we feel that these instincts caused us to make wrong decisions in the past. We have learned, we are more aware of right and wrong. Failing at trust and trusting can make us unhappy even angry at oneself.

I have seen it and experienced it from my ownself. The anger in the voices of survivors and in our eyes and the hurt in words we write. It manifests itsself into suspicion and uncertainty in all or many aspects of our lives. Work, friendships and family. relationships and even purchases all get shaped into things that feel uncontrollable or non existent because of the failure to trust. We can choose the level of trust. We do have options. We can take our time.

If the chance to trust disappears or changes then it maybe that it wasn't right for us, however this might only be the case if we truly considered that the subject of the trust was worthwhile in the first place. Trusting is hard work. Taking time for what is good for oneself can be hard because survivors can be so critical of their worthiness of having something to trust.

We must learn that we can make the right decisions to take care of ourselves. We can't see into the future so we can't know for sure if our trust pays out a winner or if it fails. That is why we must take the risk. We are surviving the future everyday we live past our abuses put upon us. If we survive, we did not fail, even when at times we want to give up. When we give up but then decide to hang on one more day, we are trusting ourselves and the future. The survivor has trusted and survived the trusting. 


Being Present In The Darkness by Cheri Huber A very different book that deals with depression. It is handwritten, not typed, which lends to its charm. By Perigee Books by The Berkley Publishing Group 10.00. I highly reccomend it.

Stress and The Woman's Body by W.David Hager MD and Linda Carruth Hager. Published by Baker Book House Company of Grand Rapids Michigan. This book has a lot of information on how stress effects us, how to recognize its symptoms and what we can do about it. It is a very informative book.

A 2nd Helping of Chicken Soup for the Soul by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen. Published by Health Communications Inc. This is filled with uplifting stories ranging from such hair raising topics as parenting, living your dreams and overcoming obstacles. There are quotes and more. It is a fun uplifting book to have available when life's stresses begin to work on us. 12.95 


I am only one. But still, I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do. Edward Everett Hale

Most people are about as happy as they make up thier minds to be --Abe Lincoln

Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved. --Helen Keller 


http://www.geocities.com/HotSprings/1206/--a page on Chronic Pain Management by John Madura. It is devoted to dealing with chronic pain.

http://www.bi.org/ascendingmoon--Survivors Hope and Home Page by Michelle. A wonderful collection of inspiration. Don't forget to sign her guestbook.

http://www.ucl.ac.uk/~ucaikjr/surv.html Kristi's survival page. A neat page about her survival. Lots of interesting graphics and links. 

Featured SiteFeatured SiteFeatured SiteFeatured SiteFeatured SiteFeatured Site

The Rape Crisis Center of San Antonio, TX.
http://hotx.com/trcc Director Ron Aaron rcrisis@connecti.com
This page has many links and serves a very wide area. If you have a question they will do thier best to help you no matter what state you live in. It is very informative and up to date. 

This message comes in to me as a plea to help out another individual.
Let's see what we can do.

Gayle Boone(not the editor)was asked out on a date by a guy; she turned him down.He started stalking her. He attacked her twice (don't know if she was raped or not). She had police reports and hospital reports - enough to get a restraining order against him. He showed up at her parents' house one Sunday afternoon, threatening all of them.Gayle called the sheriff's department to enforce her restraining order - they refused to come. The mad man was somehow convinced to leave. He attacked her again at her home a few days later and,while he was backing her into her own bedroom with a knife point at her throat, she shot the son of a _______ and killed him. She got 15 years to life.The man was the sheriff's nephew. Needless to say, a lot of people are outraged over this. We are asking the governor to review her case and grant her clemency.

Please keep her in your prayers as well.
Write to:... Address removed in April 2012 because it it no longer active.


Lying here in the dark - alone, no one to hold me.
The silence is deafening.
I stare out into the darkness, searching for meaning to all this.
The darkness turns blacker and starts to whirl,
whirling, spinning, circling around me, mocking me, whispering in my ear.
The tears fall, slipping into the quiet darkness.
Somewhere in the silence,
I hear my heart break.
I want to die, please God, let me die.
Then the pain will stop.
If I'm dead it won't hurt any more.
The darkness looms upon me, hovering, waiting.
Whirling, spinning, circling around me, mocking me,
whispering in my ear.
The tears fall, slipping into the quiet darkness.
Somewhere in the silence,
I hear my heart break.
I want to die - please God, let me die.
Then the pain will stop.
If I'm dead it won't hurt any more.
The darkness looms upon me - hovering, waiting.
It isn't darkness at all -
it's God's shadow.
He's listening.
by, Shelia

Don't forget! This newsletter is written by and for you. Please send in contributions. Without them this would not be possible. Thank you to everyone who submitted this month. This newsletter is for the sharing of survivors as we learn how to cope.Nothing in here is meant to be a substitute for therapy. If you need more information on rape I encourage you to try a rape crisis center in your area.
In Strength,
Gayle Crabtree