Before you join the #metoo sexual harassment/abuse campaign publicly think about these important points.
Maybe, just maybe, the recent backlash against sexual abuse and harassment will finally wake up the world to the horrendous treatment of individuals that has been going on since the beginning of time.
To see so many celebrities, politicians and more being publicly scolded and hopefully penalized for their acts of sexual harassment and abuse has been a long time coming. The numbers of accusers is off the charts and now with the addition of Kevin Spacey it’s not just the heterosexual world that is being outed. The gay world is now publicly a part of the sexual harassment and abuse picture as well.
Number one best selling author, counselor and life coach David Essel has been working with individuals who have been mistreated in all walks of life, from marriages to the workplace as well as the family setting, for the past 28 years.
And in a large number of those cases he has worked with individuals who have been either sexually harassed or sexually abused.
And he is one of the many professionals who is currently working with several of these individuals who have decided to come out and to share their pain publicly but he has words of caution for many who may not be ready to be this open in the eyes of the public.
“It takes an incredibly strong person to be able to publicly admit that they have been sexually harassed or sexually abused . It’s the same type of strength it takes for someone who has been a closet gay, transgender or lesbian individual to come public with their true sexual identity.
In both cases, my concern is that if the person isn’t psychologically and emotionally ready for some form of backlash or even in regards to some form of support, coming out as part of the #metoo campaign could bring challenges that most people aren’t ready for.
Here are my recommendations to individuals who have not yet come forward to claim that they also have been sexually abused or sexually harassed before making the decision to come public with it.
Number One. Have you worked with a professional counselor, therapist, life coach or minister before you go public in order to deal with your anger, rage, shame, resentment or guilt? Many people that I have seen join the #meetoo campaign on social media are very far from ready in regards to the potential backlash that could happen when they join this campaign.
If they haven’t worked with a professional but they put on Facebook that they too have been sexually harassed or sexually abuse, some individuals may call them out to explain what actually happened to them. If you’re not ready to publicly declare what sexual harassment or abuse you went through it may push you back into the dark corners of your mind and make you feel actually more shame or guilt for coming forward before you’ve done the work to heal.
Number Two. If you do come forward and publicly claim that you have been sexually harassed or abused, are you ready to stand up to the person who did it? If it’s a family member and someone asked you to explain who it was and either on purpose or by accident you claim it was a member of your family… Are you ready to go through the list of those people that might ask you why you’re making this public knowledge?
If it’s a former boyfriend, girlfriend, husband or wife and you make a declaration in public about being treated improperly, are you ready and willing emotionally, and maybe even financially, to deal with the wrath of this person in public?
If it was a former boss, manager, or owner of a company and you make some type of hinted statement in regards to this, could that former boss, manager or owner come after you publicly or personally?
And what about your current employer? If they have seen that you’ve become public claiming that a former employer sexually harassed or abused you are you ready to answer questions from them? Are you potentially ready to be blackballed by your current employer from any type of advancement out of their fear that you may claim some statements against them?
I fully support individuals who have been harassed or abused in the past to do the healing first before they make their case public.
It’s the same thing when I work with alcoholics, drug addicts, sex addicts, spending addicts and more. I tell each of them, before they come clean to their friends, family and the general public, to make sure they have a very strong grounded healing program that they have been following for at least one year before making it publicly known of theirs struggles with addiction.
And that might be very good advice for the person who has been a victim of sexual harassment and or sexual abuse.
In the past I worked with a woman who was sexually abused by her own father from the age of 11 until the age of 21. It wasn’t until I worked with her for one complete year, at the age of 40, that she was ready to come out to her family and openly admit what happened.
After working with a woman who had been brutally raped, for exactly one year, she was then ready to lend her voice to other victims and then share what she had learned from the experience and what she and I had gone through during our forgiveness program to be able to release her anger and rage at the person who brutally raped her.
Everyone has the right to have a voice in their healing process. But not everyone is ready to share their traumatic past to the public at the same time.
There may be some individuals that need very little professional help because intuitively they’ve known what to do all along to help them heal and to release the anger, rage and resentments against the person who sexually harassed or abused them.
But I think these numbers are very small. I think most people who have gone through this kind of trauma need ongoing professional help, for at least one year, in order to be solid enough and strong enough to withstand either the support or pushback from society.”
If you need help overcoming any type of trauma in life, from sexual abuse or harassment, to PTSD as well as overcoming any and all addictions, contact David directly at his website www.davidessel.com
David has been verified by psychology today is one of the top counselors and life coaches in America and is a verified relationship expert through www.marriage.com