Terrifying, unbearable, scary, uncontrollable,
By Emily Shadowdove
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
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
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
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
during their attack may be to blame for some of these
The very fact that flashbacks
seem to be uncontrollable and
unpredictable, makes stopping flashback memories seemingly
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
Your mind is now telling you that it is no longer necessary