‘Child grooming’ refers to a series of actions deliberately undertaken in order to develop an emotional bond with a child in order to sexually abuse them. Grooming increases the availability of the victim for abuse whilst decreasing the likelihood of detection for the abuser.
‘Dissociative parts of the personality’ grabbed the headlines, but my inability to set boundaries was the silent assassin destroying me from the inside… I said yes to everyone else, and no to myself. Other people mattered; I did not. And so, breakdown.
Understanding the dynamics around child sexual abuse, who the perpetrators are, how they achieve their ends, the impacts of abuse on us—all of this knowledge, this ‘psycho-education’ has aided my recovery. And so these are ten of the many things that I have learned about child sexual abuse, some of the insights that have begun to heal my shame.
Duncan Craig is the founder of Survivors Manchester and talks here about the impact of sexual abuse on men.
You don’t need to be an expert to work with people who dissociate, but you do need to understand these fundamental issues. Here are ten steps.
After trauma our brains are sensitised to threat and our amygdala – our brain’s ‘smoke alarm’ – tends to react to burnt toast as if the house is on fire. In this article Carolyn Spring shows how to turn down the sensitivity of our smoke alarm – and overcome the impacts of trauma.
One of the hardest things I found in dealing with triggers was the aftermath: the shame, the self-blame, the sense of failure and powerlessness that once again something had happened that I’d had no sense of control over.
Denial and dissociation are two sides of the same coin. In employing dissociation, we are employing denial: “This isn’t happening” or “This isn’t happening to me.” We create alter personalities to whom it happened, so that it didn’t happen to me.
Once we understand dissociation as a logical response to overwhelming trauma, it stops being so dramatic and different, and the person suffering dissociation stops being ‘complex’ and ‘bizarre’ too. There is nothing bizarre about dissociative disorders—what is bizarre is how some people can be so badly mistreated that they end up with a dissociative disorder.
Someone who has dissociative identity disorder may have distinct, coherent identities that are able to assume control of their behaviour and thought.
What medications should be used in the treatment of dissociative identity disorder? This fact sheet takes guidance from the ISSTD’s Treatment Guidelines for DID.
How should dissociative identity disorder be treated? What do the guidelines say, and who produces them?