Leading a Healthy Sex Life in the Wake of Sexual Abuse

According to The National Center for Victims of Crimes, one of every five girls and one of 20 boys is a victim of sexual abuse in the US. Whether you were abused once or repeatedly as a child, or sexually assaulted as an adult, the effects of sexual abuse linger long after the incident. Sexual abuse violates your body, your sense of safety, and your ability to trust.

At The Soho Center for Mental Health Counseling in New York City, our expert and compassionate counselors help you regain a sense of control over your body and your sexuality.  Our custom-designed psychotherapeutic service treatment plans help you achieve fast and lasting benefits.

Face the past without re-triggering trauma.

When you’re a victim of sexual abuse, a normal response is to try to forget about the assault so that you don’t have to think about it or relive the trauma. Some women and men bury memories of abuse so deeply that they don’t even remember that they were victimized. However, you may be acting out forgotten or suppressed abuse in ways that negatively affect your enjoyment of sex or your ability to be intimate, such as:

Our counselors help you deal with the abuse you suffered, explore your current feelings, and learn new ways to cope with intrusive memories, anger, and other emotions. 

Learn techniques that heal and soothe.

When you come to The Soho Center for Mental Health Counseling, our counselors take time to conduct a detailed assessment about your current symptoms, your goals for healing, and the type of abuse you suffered. Many victims of sexual abuse also suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and alcohol or drug abuse. Depending on your needs, our counselors may recommend:

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)

Cognitive behavior therapy is a type of talk therapy in which your counselor helps you recognize negative patterns in your thinking and behavior. You learn to replace negative thoughts with positive ones so that you can function better and manage stress.

Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT)

Dialectical behavior therapy starts with learning to accept your symptoms, while also working toward changing them. You may benefit from DBT if you engage in self-harm behaviors, including alcohol abuse, or if you have thoughts of suicide.

Psychodynamic therapy

This form of psychotherapy helps you become more aware of how past sexual abuse influences your present thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.   

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) 

The eight phases of EMDR help you process and heal from the trauma of sexual abuse at an accelerated rate by using your body’s natural healing systems as well as talk therapy. Women and men with PTSD respond well to EMDR.

Based on your symptoms and goals, your counselor may recommend more than one type of therapy.

Move forward in safety, with support.

Therapy and counseling help you process the sexual abuse in your past and move forward so that you can experience love, intimacy, and the full range of your sexuality. Your counselor is your partner in healing, helping you develop new ways of coping with stress and anxiety when it arises, and helping you learn how to trust again.

To start your process of healing from sexual abuse so you can have the healthy, happy sex life you deserve, call us today for a consultation. You can also reach our supportive staff using the convenient online form. 

You Might Also Enjoy...

Here's How Stress Affects Your Mental Health

New York City is one of the most exciting places on earth. But excitement, like other aspects of modern life, can be stressful. Here’s how to tell if stress is affecting your mental health.

How Does Anger Management Combat Aggression?

Your anger is out of control, and you know it. Even small frustrations — like getting cut off in traffic — send you into a rage. You’re thinking about anger management therapy, but you aren’t sure it can combat your level of aggression. It can.