Hope For Healing. Org


 

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
feels.

    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.
 

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This page is not meant to be a substitute for any kind of professional help. It is merely put together by a survivor who has found much of this information helpful to her healing and offered as a possible help to others. If you feel you need a professional to speak with please contact your local rape crisis center or health care professional. I claim no responsibility for the use of this page, use of content,or content of any links leading from this page.This page is offered for support of other survivors, information and education only.