Empowerment after Sex Abuse April 18, 2020 Nikki DuBose Leave a comment Is it possible to feel empowered and self-confident after experiencing trauma? Of course it is. It’s hard, long, and painful at times, and the process will look different for everyone, but it is absolutely possible for every survivor. I know, because I am an example. I was molested as a child and raped as an adult model, but have healed a lot from the trauma. I went through years of therapy and failed relationships only to wonder if I would ever feel whole and like a sane person. Now, getting back into modeling and doing it my way has left some people wondering if I am truly whole or a broken person repeating the same traumatic cycles. This time, however, I am in control of my decisions and body and left feeling empowered and happy. And that’s when you know you’ve healed past pains and trauma: they don’t affect you in the same way and you don’t look for outside validation. Empowerment is related to raising a person’s capability in choosing purposefully and changing those decisions into helpful behaviors. These can involve: careful disclosure, altering certain details about your story, knowing that the abuse was never your fault, understanding that people may respond in many different ways, forgiving yourself, permitting yourself to be a human being with faults, and realizing that you are not alone. Once you can work through the past shame, come to a place where you are no longer living in the past of your life’s story but are in the present and making decisions based on who you are in this moment, you can begin to see yourself not as the old victim, but as a person who is safe and in control. You can begin to look at yourself with still compassion and love, always love, but stand tall and spread your wings. Fly! You are empowered with a new chapter. You are ready to embark on a whole new set of experiences. Healing has taken place and the world better watch out; you have done the work needed to be done and now you can enjoy your new self as you deserve to do.