Click here to leave site now

Every survivor reacts to interpersonal and gender-based violence in their own unique way. Personal experience, culture, and the context of a survivor’s life often affect these reactions. Some survivors may disclose their experience to others right away, and others may choose to wait weeks, months, or even years before discussing their experiences. All emotions, reactions, and styles of coping are valid. It is normal to be experiencing any number of feelings and reactions – even seemingly contradictory ones – following your experience. Common reactions include (but are not limited to):

  • Anxiety and panic
  • Flashbacks or nightmares
  • Shock or numbness
  • Disbelief/denial
  • Depression or sadness
  • Shame or self-blame
  • Fear or distrust
  • Changes in sexual activity habits
  • Confusion or inability to focus
  • Increased substance use

Healing is possible! It is a non-linear process with no timeline, and there is no right way to heal. You are more than your experience, and you have the capacity to recover and build healthy, trusting, emotionally intimate relationships with yourself and others. Recovery is not always easy, but the IVS team at CAPS is here to support and guide you, whatever your healing process may look like. If you would like to meet with an IVS counselor or learn more about the support available to you, please contact us.