Physical assault is a painful and traumatic experience for the survivor. Recovery and healing often take a long time. As a family member or a friend of the survivor, you are an integral part of this process to help the survivor bounce back to a meaningful life. Being present and loving towards the person is important.
At the same time, you need to be careful and not judge or analyze the situation from your own perspective. You have to listen to the survivor and believe. This does sound challenging for you as well, but with the intervention and support of a skilled counselor in the field, both of you can get through the process of healing and recovery successfully.
Dr. Robert Turner is an esteemed counselor and a man of faith who helps physical assault survivors return to a fulfilling and meaningful life. He attends church regularly and volunteers in socio-civic work in helping survivors and their families.
Physical assault takes a long time to heal, even years. The hurt, pain, and guilt take time to go away. Every survivor is different, so the healing process needs to be customized as per the person. A skilled counselor is mandatory to be present, as no matter how compassionate or loving you are as the family member or friend of the survivor, there are certain areas where you might overlook in the recovery process.
There are some warning signs like suicidal tendencies, thoughts of self-harm, and other things that only a counselor will identify during the counseling sessions. You can be a part of these sessions to support the person and let him/her know they are not alone in this journey towards healing from the trauma.
Conversation as a part of the therapy
Physical assault is painful, and the risks of post-traumatic stress disorder are high, especially if the incident was violent. Research shows that almost 50% of survivors report the symptoms of PTSD, which include the following-
- Getting startled quickly.
- Overriding negative beliefs and thoughts.
- Re-experiencing the traumatic events in the form of nightmares, flashbacks, etc.
With the help of conversational therapy, these symptoms of PTSD can be addressed or prevented from taking charge of it at the outset.
Due to the incident, the physical health of the survivor suffers as well. With prolonged therapy, counselors help the person discover the differences between physical assault and physical health.
In the opinion of Dr. Robert Turner, survivors feel powerless and helpless after the traumatic incident. Regular therapy with counseling helps them to reclaim their lives. The physical health of the person also suffers. They lack self-care and often do not pay attention to their food and appearance.
As a family member or friend, your presence counts a lot. Being aware and present with the survivor accelerates the path to healing and recovery. The wound heals gradually with time, and the survivor gets the chance to move on and bounce back to a normal life with your encouragement and support!