There are many types of abuse. Sexual, physical, and emotional abuse can all take a serious toll on the person being abused. The good news is that counseling can help. It is never your fault that you’re abused but you can take control and get your life back.
Start by understanding the cycle of abuse
Every situation is unique but it’s common for abuse to follow a specific cycle. Generally, it starts off with the abuser being tense. They may argue more than usual, they may threaten those they’re close to, and they may become angry. They’ll often have a “reason” for this anger but remember that reacting in anger is never the right answer for a problem. The next step in the anger cycle is typically for them to become violent. This doesn’t have to mean physical violence, although it often does. It can be sexual violence or emotional abuse.
The abuser will typically seem out of control. It’s common for the person being abused to feel like it’s their fault or that they can stop the anger. They can’t. Finally, the abuser will move on to feel remorse. This is often referred to as the honeymoon period. The abuser will swear that they’ll never do anything like that again. They will say they’re sorry and they likely are sorry. They may cry and show sincere emotion. But just because they are emotional and regret what they did does not mean they’ll be able to control themselves when the cycle continues.
Let your counselor help you through this tough time
So how can a counselor help a person being abused? It all depends on what the person needs. At Thriveworks Westminster Counseling & Coaching, your safety is our top priority. We know that not everyone in an abusive situation feels safe leaving. We can offer crisis services if you need them or help you find the resources you need. We can walk you through your complicated feelings of shame, guilt, anger, and love with professional guidance.